The Liver is the largest internal organ in the body. With over 500 different functions, that includes digestion, metabolism, removal of toxins, and nutrient storage, the Liver helps the body function properly, digest food effectively, and clear toxins from the human body. Since the Liver plays a vital role in affecting our overall health and wellness, we need to understand what can impair its functionality, so that we can avoid doing those things and do those things that can improve its overall functioning. We look at a few habits that can harm your Liver, as much as drinking alcohol, if not more.
Trans fats are derived from multiple animal meat, including beef, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. These trans fats are also found in fast foods, processed, and pre-packaged ready-made foods. Since the Liver cannot tolerate trans fats, it leads to increased blood sugar and fat deposits around the Liver, which eventually results in Cirrhosis or Liver cell death. High consumption of food items that contain trans fats can also result in myriad health problems, including Diabetes, heart disease, Fatty Liver Disease, and Dementia, so always have them in moderation.
Sugar can harm the Liver and is as bad as alcohol. Whether it is in the form of fructose or artificial sweeteners, high consumption of sugar cannot be tolerated by the body, especially in the long term and can lead to Liver Disease. To prevent this scenario, it is best to consume sugar from natural sources like vegetables and fruits so that your Liver can digest it quickly and provide the necessary fuel needed in the body.?
The Liver metabolizes many drugs. Some of the medicines that can easily surpass a safe threshold of Liver tolerance and can cause significant Liver damage include the following:??
Painkillers containing Acetaminophen, Paracetamol, and Narcotics
Stimulants/ADHD drugs like Ritalin, Amphetamine
Cocaine, Marijuana, and Ecstasy
Intravenous drugs can transmit infections like Hepatitis B and C, which can also lead to Chronic Liver Disease and even Liver Cancer
When consuming antibiotics and drugs, it is essential to check the prescribed dosage of each drug and add up the total dosage so that it does not cross the required level. If you are confused, we recommend you seek the advice of a doctor before consuming any drugs, even if it is for something as minor as fever or headaches.
A physical activity represents a critical element in preventing and managing many chronic diseases, so every person must have some level of physical activity every day. Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD), which is now considered the most common cause of Chronic Liver Disease in westernized societies, can be caused by physical inactivity and lack of exercise. Additionally, a sedentary lifestyle also increases the risks of having a Fatty Liver that can lead to a disease called Steatosis, or a build-up of Lipids and Carbohydrate reserves in the Liver.
Stress is deeply connected to high Cortisol levels, which can cause a lot of Liver damage. Stress is a recognized risk factor for cardiovascular and metabolic disease as it can initiate a complex spectrum of biological and behavioural reactions. This will then result in activation of the?Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenocortical (HPA) Axis and stimulation of the Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS) with increased Epinephrine, Cortisol, and pro-inflammatory Cytokines, all of which could induce NAFLD or Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. Further, stress can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms that include alcohol intake, tobacco use, and poor diet, thereby adversely affecting the functioning of the Liver.
Water is an essential part of any healthy diet, as it helps to flush out any waste from the human body. It prevents toxins from building up in the body and hurting the Liver. Regular consumption of water makes blood thinner, making it easy for the Liver to filter and remove any toxins. Without a proper functioning Liver, toxins will build up in the human body and be detrimental to your overall health. Avoid Liver Diseases like Liver Cancer, Cirrhosis, and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease by following our tips.
Take your vaccination for Hepatitis B – Since Hepatitis B is a Liver disease that can cause mild illness or even turn into a serious, lifelong condition, it is essential to be vaccinated against it
Include green vegetables and fresh fruits in your diet so that you have the necessary nutrients to fight against infections and diseases
Drink enough water so that the toxins in your body are flushed out at regular intervals
Have a healthy exercise regime where you are active for at least 60 minutes every day. If you do not have time to take out each day, make sure to do small exercises at your desk, walk to places, etc. so that you are physically active as far as possible
Drink alcohol responsibly
Check your supplements as they can sometimes cause Liver damage
Wash your hands regularly, especially if you are coming from outside
Test yourself for any Liver damage, if you are above 50yrs or have a family history of the same