The liver is the body's processing plant. Liver and gallbladder disease are characterized by thick bile. The best way to keep the liver running well is to provide it with liver friendly foods while avoiding foods that are hard for the liver to process:
Foods and Chemicals to be Avoided:
- Hydrogenated vegetable oils also known as trans fatty acids or simply trans fats
- Artificial sweetener especially aspartame
- Chemical preservatives of all kinds
- Foods containing high fructose corn syrup
- Dairy products
Liver friendly foods are generally foods that are fresh. As you might expect vegetables of all kinds tend to keep the liver clean, especially those high in sulfur especially the cruciferous vegetables such as: Brussel Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Garlic, Leaks shallots kale radishes and onions to name a few.
Herbs and spices are generally also liver friendly.
Sweeteners: The safest sweetener for the liver is Stevia. It has no effect on your blood sugar and is up to 300 times sweeter than sugar. You can find Stevia in the form of powders, crops and tablets. You can also use sugar alcohols most commonly known his xylitol. Sugar alcohols contain very few calories compared to regular table sugar and thus have less effect on blood sugar.
Whats the big deal about hydrogenated fats anyway? While the main thing is Trans fats do not have flexibility, Where the Cis-Fat molecule tends to have lots of bends in the molecule and it makes it more flexible. Trans fats in your membranes tend to make your membrane stiff and Un-Flexible and impair function. The advantage of Trans Fats to the food manufacturing business is that they're cheaper and they have a much longer shelf life.
How to Avoid Hydrogenated Oil:
- Read labels and look for the any of the following terms: Partially Hydrogenated, Hydrogenated Fats. Sometimes they will try to hide the fact they are using Trans fats. Vegetable oil or cholesterol free does not mean they are not using Trans fats.
- Donuts and other deep fat fried foods tend to be full of hydrogenated fats and there are no labels on a donut.
- Microwave popcorn is especially bad; Typically the second ingredient is partially hydrogenated soybean oil. Here is a list of foods highest in Trans-Fatty Acids.
Top Trans Fats Foods List:
- Deep-Fried Food
- Pie Crust
- Non-Dairy Creamer
- Baked Goods
- Fried Food
- Refrigerator Dough
Dairy Products should also be avoided, While they're not high in Trans-Fats, They are high in saturated fats, Which also tend to be inflexible. However, given the choice between a Trans-Fat and the saturated fats found in dairy products, you are better off with the dairy products.
Now you know what to avoid, Here is a list of the top ten Liver Friendly foods:
- Sweet Potatoes
- Leafy Greens
- Minimal Amounts of Healthy Fats