Herbal Liver Cleansers
by Dr Jenny Tylee
- Solvents such as formaldehyde, toluene and acetone.
- Polycyclic hydrocarbons which are components of various pesticides and
herbicides - including DDT, dioxin, 2,4,5-T, 2,4-D.
- The halogenated compounds PCB and PCP.
We know that our exposure to chemicals is probably high as the yearly production of
synthetic pesticides exceeds 1.4 billion pounds in the United States alone. Also the
United States dumps 600,000 tons of lead into the atmosphere each year. This
means that it is difficult to avoid being exposed to chemicals. The liver of each
individual will have a continuous load of chemicals to process. The ability of our livers
to process these and other chemicals will determine our health and therefore also the
health of our immune systems.
How can the liver's function be supported?
It is important to look after our liver as it is vital to our health. It is vital (among
other functions) for the removal of toxic chemicals from our body and for the
production of chemicals needed by our immune system. Keeping our colon's clean so
that toxic material is not absorbed into the bloodstream and to be removed by the
liver is one important step. Taking a good vitamin and mineral supplement is essential
for dealing with toxic chemicals. Vitamin C, beta-carotene and vitamin E are
important for protecting the liver from damage and also for helping in the
detoxification process. The B group vitamins, calcium and trace minerals are also
important for the elimination of heavy metals from the body.
There are also some herbs which help to protect the liver from damage and
help improve liver function. These herbs include:
In this article we will consider milk thistle, dandelion, burdock and yellow dock.
Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum) - is very effective at promoting good liver functioning
as it helps protect the liver from toxins and pollutants by preventing free radical
damage. It also stimulates the flow of bile from the liver and gall bladder for digesting
fats. Bile is necessary for the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K) and
helps to assimilate calcium. Milk thistle nutritionally supports the liver's ability to
maintain normal function. It has shown positive effects in treating nearly every
known form of liver disease, including cirrhosis, hepatitis, necroses, and liver damage
due to drug and alcohol abuse. Milk thistle works due to its ability to inhibit the
factors responsible for liver damage, coupled with the fact that it stimulates
production of new liver cells to replace old damaged ones.
There are no known contra-indications to milk thistle. However, there is a caution for
HIV patients, because many medications taken by individuals diagnosed with
HIV/AIDS - such as protease inhibitors and non-nukes are processed by the liver
enzyme which is decreased by milk thistle. If milk thistle is taken by someone using
protease inhibitors or non-nukes, it has the potential to change the blood levels of
these drugs. This should not be a concern as long as levels of these drugs are
monitored closely and dosage is adjusted to reach the desired levels.
Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) Dandelion root helps stimulate healthy liver function.
It is a blood cleanser that is very rich in vitamins and minerals and promotes healthy
circulation and stimulates bile flow. Dandelion is famous for its general detoxifying
bitter tonic. Dandelion increases the elimination of toxins, wastes and pollutants
through the liver and kidneys and thus cleanses the blood and tissues. The bitters in
both the root and leaves assist the digestive system and liver. It can be used for liver
disease, including jaundice and hepatitis and for problems associated with a sluggish
liver, such as, tiredness, irritability, skin problems and headaches. It can also be used
in gallbladder infections.
Burdock Root (Arctium lappa) Burdock Root promotes healthy blood and skin. It is
an excellent blood and lymphatic purifier, and promotes healthy liver and kidney
function. It cleanses the blood by detoxification and hastening the removal of toxins
from the body. The roots, leaves and seeds are all bitter which stimulates the
digestion and liver action and pancreas activity. They can be used to strengthen the
digestion, relieve wind, distension and indigestion and act as a mild laxative. It assists
with the re-establishment of healthy bowel bacteria and is a remedy for bacterial and
fungal infections particularly in the bowel. This aspect also makes it useful in dry,
scaly skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis (chronic skin conditions can only
be healed from within using internal remedies). The treatment needs to be carried
out over some period of time.
It is best to start with small doses of burdock and build up the levels as appropriate
as excessive use can lead to a severe release of the toxins into the blood stream.
Yellow dock (Rumex crispus) is used extensively in the treatment of skin conditions
such as psoriasis. Yellow dock has a powerful cleansing effect on the body. It
promotes a bowel movement within a few hours of taking the herb. It does this while
also reducing any excess activity of the digestive tract and soothing any irritation of
the intestinal wall. This makes yellow dock a gentle cleanser for long term treatment
of a sluggish bowel and the treatment of constipation. It is also used for bowel
infections and the treatment of peptic ulcers and contains bitter glycosides which
stimulate the liver and gallbladder which aids digestion and can be used for bowel
distension and flatulence. The tonic effect on the liver also means that it is useful as a
revitalizing remedy for general debility, mental lethargy, headaches and
convalescence. It has the effect of mobilizing congested blood and lymph and
removing toxins from the tissues.
Our liver is a very important organ for health. It is vital (among other functions) for
the removal of toxic chemicals from our body and for the production of chemicals
needed by our immune system. Without an effectively functioning liver our bodies are
prone many diseases. You need a healthy diet and lifestyle and it is recommended
that you take a good multivitamin and mineral supplement daily and use herbal
treatment to detoxify your liver. The herbs milk thistle, dandelion, burdock and yellow
dock are all excellent herbs for detoxifying and supporting your liver. You can find out
more about these from healthproductssite.com.
About The Author
Dr Jenny Tylee is an experienced health professional who is passionate about health
and wellbeing. She believes that health is not just absence of disease and seeks to
actively promote vitality and wellness through empowering others. She encourages
people to improve their health by , their body, taking essential,
non contaminated vitamin and mineral supplements (from healthproductssite.com)
and many other methods, including herbal remedies. She also owns
The liver plays an important role in
maintaining health, vitality and energy
levels. Our livers are responsible for
dealing with the constant onslaught
of toxic chemicals that are in our
body and the environment. These
toxic chemicals are in the air we
breathe, the water we drink, the food
we eat and the personal hygiene
products and cosmetics we use.
Some of the toxic chemicals that
pass through the liver include:
- Heavy metals such as lead,
cadmium, mercury and
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this website is for educational purposes only. Please consult with your physician before using natural
remedies and before making any drastic changes to your diet or exercise program.
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