What Is A Liver Cleanse

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

Certain people want to try out a liver cleanse, but before doing so, it is important to understand the potential benefits and side effects.

What is a Liver Cleanse?

A liver cleanse is the act of flushing our your liver and giving it a break from its difficult job of purifying the blood of all toxins. However, since the liver is designed specifically for that purpose, there is some controversy about the need for this type of cleanse. In fact, some people argue that using a liver cleanse products or going on a drastic detox diet could do more harm than good in the long run.

There are some ways that you can naturally cleanse the liver, including certain foods that are known to be anti-inflammatory for the liver, and could reduce the chances of liver disease. However, the idea that liver cleanses are essential, or that the liver requires them, is not supported by formal results. Lifestyle changes, such as reducing your alcohol intake, are more effective than a short-term liver cleanse. [1]

Various spoons containing different herbs and spices on a black background

Liver cleanses are supposed to help you improve your digestive health. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

How to Do a Liver Cleanse?

If you want to cleanse your liver, there are many different approaches that have been popularized in recent years. The best liver cleansers include drinking raw vegetable juice, coffee enema, eliminating toxic foods, increasing potassium intake, taking beef liver tablets, and more. Let us discuss them in detail below.

Raw Vegetable Juice

Drinking raw vegetable juice is an excellent way to get all of the nutrients you require for the day while lowering your caloric intake and eliminating many processed or inflammatory foods. The vegetables will also lower the pH of your body and help to increase your metabolism. [2]

Coffee Enemas

One of the strangest parts of a liver cleanse is a coffee enema, as it can stimulate the production of bile and help to speed the flushing of toxins from the body. [3]

Eliminate Toxic Foods

If your diet tends to include a lot of processed foods and those that have additives, nitrites, and artificial sugars, your liver is likely dealing with a lot of stress already. By following a more natural and less processed diet, you are able to reduce the workload of the liver, while also reducing the threat to heart health and lowering your risk of developing diabetes. [4]

Potassium Intake

Eating potassium-rich foods is critical if you want to cleanse your liver; potassium can lower blood pressure and reduce stress on the liver, making it easier to repair and recover. [5]

Milk Thistle Supplements

These supplements are known to strengthen the walls of the liver, while also eliminating the stored up toxins from the liver very rapidly. [6]

Beef Liver Tablets

Eating liver is one of the best ways to improve liver health, but if you don’t want to eat beef liver, try the supplemental tablets instead! [7]

Foods that Cleanse the Liver

There are some foods that can naturally boost liver function and are relatively easy to add to your diet. These foods either help to reduce inflammation in the liver or can support the detoxifying abilities of the liver.

Liver Cleanse Side Effects

Whenever you make a major change in your diet or nutritional intake, there can be side effects.

  • Fatigue: People who have gone on intense liver cleanses often report feelings of tiredness and stomach issues, among others.
  • Headaches: They are one of the most commonly reported side effects, along with irritability and mood swings.
  • Dehydration: Depending on the details of the cleanse you choose, you may also experience dehydration or stomach upset for a period of 2-3 days after the cleanse is complete.

Experts recommend increasing your fluid intake while performing a cleanse for your liver.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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