Prevent liver damage: One third of Americans have nonalcoholic fatty liver disease

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liver(NaturalHealth365) Not all liver damage is caused by alcohol or hepatitis. In fact, these are not even the most common causes of liver disease in the United States anymore. The Life Extension Foundation states that the main cause of liver disease in Americans of all ages is excess weight, which leads to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) can cause liver failure if left untreated. With epidemic levels of obesity in the United States, this disease is showing up in even teenagers and young children. Because there are no pharmacological treatments for the disease, the only cures are natural, particularly diet, exercise, liver cleansing juices and supplements.

Milk thistle shown to help people with liver damage

In addition to eating a healthy diet and exercising to lose weight, those who have NAFLD can prevent and reverse liver damage by using milk thistle. Milk thistle benefits NAFLD by strengthening, cleansing, and healing the liver of previous damage from excess fat. This benefit has been confirmed by a number of studies.

Of course, you may be wondering, why is milk thistle so effective?

That’s because of silymarin, a compound found in milk thistle, and it is the part of the plant that heals the liver of NAFLD. It both protects against the damage fat can do to the liver, and heals the damage already done.

Because the serious risks to a person’s health and even life posed by liver damage caused by NAFLD, the very real milk thistle benefits in protecting the liver should not be ignored.

Understanding why silymarin improves liver function

According to a July 2013 study in the journal European Cytokine Network, silymarin is a powerful broad spectrum anti-inflammatory agent. It also has potent anti-cancer properties, and very specific properties that benefit the liver. It acts as a shield for the liver, warding off threats of all kinds, especially those caused by NAFLD.

Its beneficial properties protect against oxidative damage, inflammation in the liver, and the formation of fibrosis that end stage NAFLD can lead to that causes the need for liver transplants for a patient with this disease to survive.

Obviously, the best thing to do (to avoid health issues) is to remain healthy – which will prevent NAFLD in the first place. This means eating a healthy diet low in ‘bad’ fats (like fried or cooked vegetable oils) and high in good ones (like coconut oil and avocados) – with lots of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables.

Don’t forget to remain physically active – about 30 minutes per day plus walking more and staying well-hydrated will do the trick. These things ward off the obesity that leads to NAFLD. Start out by following a healthy diet and lifestyle routine, and you may never have to deal with NAFLD and the related health problems it can bring.

Here’s a great liver cleansing juice – you may want to try:

  • 1/2 lemon or lime, with some peel
  • 2 apples
  • 2 dandelion or 2 rocket leaves or 2 cabbage leaves
  • 1/2 cup broccoli florets, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic or ¼ red onion (can use less if desired)
  • 1/2 cup parsley

Obviously, organic produce is best and, since this is a strong mixture, you may dilute it with 1 cup water, extra apple or dandelion root tea. Other great juicing ideas can include beets – which are great for supporting healthy liver function.

If you are already on your way to getting NAFLD or already have it, be sure to seek the advice of an experienced naturopath and ask him (or her) about these suggestions.

Above all, never give up on your health because you deserve to enjoy life pain-free.


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  • Vince Lesco

    The question should be why is this happening? Is it only because we have a growing obesity problem in this nation? Can a contributing factor be the amount of prescriptive and over the counter medication?

    This is a reversible condition as the article points out. The key may be in both weight management and exercise. The supplements mentioned are good. But, loosing the weight may mean less pharmaceutical use and that may go a long way to take the burden off the liver.

    The liver has to filter and eliminate toxins, and if anything is toxic to this organ it is prescriptive and over the counter drugs.

  • Jordan Lawrence

    What has worked its way into the mainstream psyche is these conditions are not abnormal, but part of the human experience. What has also gained acceptance is that the tactical use of drugs is the answer to all health problems.

    We can only dramatically improve health and survival by taking control and ownership of our health.

  • Ramond Eichorn

    This is a very helpful article, keep up the good work. This condition will soon be a genuine disease brought on by this new health problem called obesity.

  • Eddy P

    This article points out that there is hope. There are potent alternative ways to heal. It is good that we still have the freedom to take charge of our own health.

  • Lindsey P

    The liver is where cholesterol is made. To help maintain healthy HDL, LDL , and total cholesterol levels in the proper range you need a healthy liver.

  • pam r

    Beet juice is also awesome for the liver. I try to have 8oz 3-4x a week – with a little carrot, apple and lemon. 30% of people having fatty liver that is a health crisis. You need a healthy liver to be healthy.