PROTECT YOUR MIGHTY LIVER!
HOW IT KEEPS YOU HEALTHY - HOW TO KEEP IT HEALTHY - WHY YOU NEED TO ACT NOW!
The liver is the most overlooked and misunderstood of all our body's organs. Because of the sudden, potentially fatal consequences of heart attack and stroke, everyone's attention is always focused on the heart or the brain, but without a healthy liver, you ultimately cannot survive; of all your organs, none does more for you than the liver. Still, until something goes wrong with the liver, it's usually completely overlooked. Until now...
The Liver Cure: Natural Solutions for Liver Health to Target Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease, Autoimmune Diseases, Diabetes, Inflammation, Stress & Fatigue, Skin Conditions, and Many More explains the major reasons why you need to take action NOW to protect your liver, because it is assaulted everyday by factors in our modern-day life. The liver is the site for the body's most powerful detoxification, but over the years an unhealthy diet, sedentary lifestyle choices, and environmental toxics can take its toll on liver health.
World renowned physician and author Dr. Russell Blaylock provides a comprehensive overview of the liver, and outlines the latest health information on the many dangers to your liver-health and what you can do to protect it, including:
Why the Liver is Your Body's Most Important Organ
Your Liver's Role in Disease
The Dangers of Cancer, Cirrhosis, Hepatitis & Fatty Liver Disease
Medication & Environmental Hazards
Poor Lifestyle Choices that Will Hurt Your Liver
The Best Exercise for Liver Health
How to Follow a Pro-Liver Diet
Transplant Options & Cautions
The Liver Cure offers natural remedies, lifestyle strategies and dietary solutions that can take your liver off overload to resolve a wide range of symptoms and conditions, along with the latest treatment solutions from conventional and alternative therapies to new scientific discoveries and interventions.
The Liver Cure: Natural Solutions for Liver Health to Target Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease, Autoimmune Diseases, Diabetes, Inflammation, Stress & Fatigue, Skin Conditions, and Many More
Table of Contents
Part 1: YOUR LIVER AND HOW IT KEEPS YOU HEALTHY
Chapter 1 - Your Mighty Liver
The liver is the most overlooked and misunderstood of all our body's organs. Because of the sudden, potentially fatal consequences of heart attack and stroke, everyone's attention is always focused on the heart or the brain (stroke), but without a healthy liver, you ultimately cannot survive. Still, until something goes wrong with the liver, it's usually completely overlooked. This chapter will describe the football-sized liver, it's location, its parts, and provide a very brief view of its main function, which is digesting food and ridding your body of toxins, but also get the point across that this is only a tiny portion of the jobs that this miraculous organ does.
Chapter 2 - Your Liver: Jack of All Trades
Of all your organs, none does more for you than the liver. The heart is basically a pump, the lungs enable you to breath, but the liver does a myriad of diverse tasks, and can magically switch from one to another seamlessly.
Here is a rundown on six vital functions your liver performs:
Digests food - Manufactures the digestive juice called bile which helps break down fats and vitamins so your body can use them
Extracts nutrients - Extracts the nutrients from foods, such as vitamins and minerals, and stores them until needed
Fuels your body - Stores about a day's supply of glycogen (blood sugar), releasing it into your blood when needed
Removes toxins - Filters unhealthy materials from food so they can be excreted
Safeguards your body - Finds, catches and filters out harmful bacteria in food
Sharpens your brain - Filters out toxins that could cloud your thinking, and ultimately cost you your life.
Chapter 3 - Your Liver Makes Drugs Work
One of the most important functions of your liver is that it processes drugs. The body must be able to process (chemically alter, or metabolize) drugs, and just as your liver helps metabolize food, it also processes medications.
Liver disorders affect the metabolizing of drugs in the following ways:
How much of the drug is absorbed from the intestine
How quickly and completely the liver metabolizes a drug - for example, changing the drug into an active form or into an inactive form (a form that has no effect on the body)
How much of the drug is transported throughout the body
How quickly the drug is eliminated from the body
How sensitive the body is to a drug's effects
For instance, a chronic liver disorder can make people more sensitive to the effects of a drug, even when the amount is not increases. In addition, the liver acts on the brain, and brain function can deteriorate when such sensitivity is increased.
Part 2: THE DANGERS FACING YOUR LIVER
One of the major reasons why you need to take action now to protect your liver is because it is assaulted everyday by factors in our modern-day life.
This section will cover the following dangers:
Chapter 4 - The "All American Diet" is a Liver Killer
The American diet, known also as the Western diet, is a liver killer. High in sugar and fat, and has been linked to the prevalence of chronic disease in the U.S., mainly because it results in chronic bodily inflammation, which is not visible to the eye, but which results in aging and damage to the body's organs. The vast majority of research has focused on the effect of inflammation on other parts of the body, particularly the heart, and brain (chronic inflammation is linked to coronary heart disease, diabetes, insulin resistance, and even Alzheimer's disease. But this may be changing, especially with the publication in 2017 of a paper in the American Journal of Pathology, which found that mice fed a Western diet developed inflammation of the liver.
This clearly shows that, to keep a healthy liver, people should avoid:
Chapter 5 - Excitotoxins Poison Your Liver
The liver plays a Herculean task of nourishing and protecting the body, but today's modern life damages it in many ways and a key one is through the consumption of excitotoxins.
Excitotoxins are food additives commonly found in processed and packaged foods, which make up the majority of the American diet. This chapter will explore the most common excitotoxins and how they damage the liver. They include the following, as well as a fourth, high fructose corn syrup, which will garner special attention, as it is blamed for the epidemic of fatty liver disease.
These excitotoxins are commonly found in the processed & packaged foods we eat:
Aspartame: This artificial sweetener is a neurotoxic drug, which means it is poisonous to the nervous system. It is a molecule composed of three components, aspartic acid, a methyl ester which turns into methyl alcohol and phenylalanine. Persons with cirrhosis of the liver are at increased risk because they may be unable to metabolize aspartame and its breakdown products
MSG: A very common flavor enhancer added to Chinese food, canned vegetables, soups and processed meats. Glutamate is its main component, which is known to damage the liver.
High Fructose Corn Syrup: High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a type of corn syrup to which enzymes have been added to change the glucose into fructose, a form of sugar that adds sweetness, but is also more easily metabolized by the body, and also easily converted by the body into excess fat. This ingredient is believed to be fueling the epidemic of fatty liver disease.
Chapter 6 - How Smoking & Alcohol Damage Your Liver
Smoking: Most people think of smoking's main hazard is to the lungs, but the truth is that the thousands of poisons contained in tobacco smoke damages every organ in the body, including the liver. Smoking can increase the risk of both liver cancer and cirrhosis of the liver. The toxic chemicals in tobacco smoke can cause inflammation and eventual cirrhosis. Smoking also promotes the production of cytokines, chemicals that cause even more inflammation and damage to liver cells. This chapter will also cover the emerging science behind vaping, which is sending some users back to cigarettes to cope with an enhanced nicotine addiction, and questions that are being raised about cannabis. As smoking "weed" becomes more common, there are concerns being raised, including those in a recent study on CBD oil, in which researchers at the University of Arkansas found raised liver toxicity in mice.
Alcohol: it's no surprise that too much alcohol results in cirrhosis, as this is a known disease of alcoholics. But what about people who are not alcoholics and only imbibe socially. When it comes to your liver, they don't necessarily get a free pass. For one thing, people who imbibe in alcohol often think they can mitigate its effect by eating greasy food, but this only compounds the insult to the liver. Alcohol is extremely hard on the liver, and people who say they drink "socially" may actually be taking in damaging alcohol than they realize.
Chapter 7 - Environmental Liver Toxins
Even the air we breathe can damage the liver, which makes living a healthy lifestyle of even more paramount importance.
These are known to poison the liver:
Pollution: Polluted air is a known risk for liver damage. Pollution is linked to liver fibrosis, metabolic disease and liver cancer.
Chemicals: Chemicals you may be exposed to on the job can cause liver injury. Common chemicals that can cause liver damage include the dry cleaning solvent carbon tetrachloride, a substance called vinyl chloride (used to make plastics), and a group of industrial chemicals called polychlorinated biphenyls.
Pesticides: Exposure to pesticides causes liver damage and can raise the risk of diseases including liver cancer, where recent research revealed it may hike risk by 71 percent. A recent study also linked exposure to glyphosate, the major ingredient in the popular weed killer "Roundup," to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Exposure to the herbicide paraquat can result in toxic chemicals throughout the body, primarily the lungs, liver and kidneys.
Chapter 8 - How Medications Damage the Liver
One of the major ways to safeguard the liver is to be very aware of the potential of certain drugs to damage it. Such damage can take the form of liver failure, a serious condition for which there is no fix. Some 2,000 cases of liver failure occur each year, which are directly due to the effect of medications. Sometimes medications are life-saving and cannot be avoided, but too often, liver damage can occur because too much medication is unthinkingly consumed.
The book will cover these 10 medications & their impact on the liver:
Diclofenac (Voltaren, Cambia)
Amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
Statins (cholesterol lowering medication)
Part 3: LIVER DISEASE
Liver disease is an umbrella term, encompassing any medical condition, toxin or other substance or material that affects the liver's ability to function. This chapter will explain that there are two basic types of liver disease, acute and chronic, and will also cover general signs, symptoms, and ways that health care professionals use to determine whether liver disease is present.
This chapter will include:
Chronic vs. acute liver disease
Liver disease signs and symptoms
Liver disease diagnostic tests
There will also be a box on elevated liver enzymes, which are a common finding and can cause concern. Most of the time, elevated liver enzymes don't signal a chronic, serious liver problem, but they can indicate the presence of liver disease, so they will be discussed here.
Chapter 9 - The Many Types of Hepatitis
Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis can be mild or it can lead to a very malignant form of liver cancer. It is an acute liver disease, which means it comes on suddenly, but it can transform into a chronic ailment.
This chapter will include the symptoms of hepatitis, as well as conventional and alternative treatments, of which there are several. Hepatitis B and C will be discussed in depth, as they are the most common threat; the other types of Hepatitis (A, D and E) will also be briefly discussed.
This chapter will include:
Caused by the virus of the same name, hepatitis A is an infection of the liver that causes inflammation and flu-like symptoms, such as fatigue and fever. It is very contagious and more common in the developing world.
This serious liver infection was decreasing, but it is now on the rise again in the U.S. It is an acute liver infection caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), but it can become chronic. This serious form of hepatitis hikes the risk of developing liver failure, liver cancer or cirrhosis, which permanently scars of the liver.
The rate of hepatitis B had been declining but in 2015, the acute hepatitis B infection rate in the U.S. increased by 20.7%, rising for the first time since 2006. The sharpest increases in new hepatitis B cases are occurring largely in states that have been impacted the most by the opioid epidemic.
There is a vaccine for hepatitis B, but it's rates have been declining, possibly also leading to the increase in cases.
Recommended treatments will include both conventional as well as natural supplements.
Like hepatitis B, hepatitis C is also a viral infection that causes liver inflammation and can lead to serious liver damage. It can also be acute or chronic, and lead to the same dangerous conditions as does hepatitis B. Its incidence in the U.S. has been rising. There is no vaccine for hepatitis C.
Hepatitis C is a big problem for Baby Boomers. Americans born between 1945 and 1964 are five times more likely to develop it, for reasons that are not completely understood. The symptoms of hepatitis C can be vague, so this chapter also discusses groups of people that are especially at risk, so they can be on the lookout should they become unwell. This is especially important because, unlike hepatitis B, which is manageable, but not curable, hepatitis C is curable.
Hepatitis C is also dangerous because it can cause complications that can affect other parts of the body.
Recommended treatments will include both conventional as well as natural supplements.
These potential complications include:
Recommended treatments will include both conventional as well as natural supplements.
This form of hepatitis only affects individuals who already have hepatitis D
This type of hepatitis is contracted through contaminated water (similar to hepatitis A), or can occur in people who already have a compromised immune system. Person-to-person transmission is rare.
In this type of hepatitis, the body's immune system attacks liver cells. This disease can be quite serious and, if not treated, gets worse over time, leading to cirrhosis of the liver and/or liver failure. But the good news is that, when properly diagnosed, this ailment is treatable.
NOTE: There will also be a box on the connection between Epstein-Barr Virus and Hepatitis.
Chapter 10 - The Epidemic of Fatty Liver Disease
Non-alcoholic liver disease is a serious health threat. An estimated 10-20 percent of Americans have this type of liver disease, which is caused by the buildup of fat in the liver, and the numbers are rising, apparently due to the increasing prevalence of obesity in the U.S.
There are two types of this form of liver disease. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) refers to the buildup of extra at cells in the liver. Having fatty liver disease itself doesn't necessarily damage it, but in 10 to 20 percent of these cases the fat infiltrates the liver, which leads to a progressive type of fatty liver disease called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or NASH.
NASH has become the third most common reason for liver transplants, following alcohol abuse and hepatitis C.
This chapter will encompass conventional treatment, including weight loss, exercise, and avoidance of unnecessary medications. Diet is key, especially the avoidance of high fructose corn syrup, which is a major contributor to fatty liver disease. The chapter will include specific recommendations for natural supplements.
Chapter 11 - Cirrhosis
Cirrhosis is a late stage of scarring (fibrosis) of the liver caused by many forms of liver diseases and conditions, such as hepatitis and chronic alcoholism.
Each time the liver is injured, whether by disease, excessive alcohol consumption or another cause, it tries to repair itself. In the process, scar tissue forms. As cirrhosis progresses, more and more scar tissue forms, making it difficult for the liver to function (decompensated cirrhosis). Advanced cirrhosis is life-threatening.
The liver damage done by cirrhosis generally can't be undone. But if liver cirrhosis is diagnosed early and the cause is treated, further damage can be limited and, rarely, reversed. This chapter will discuss important ways to limit the damage from cirrhosis and other supportive care. A liver transplant may be an option for some.
Chapter 12 - Liver Cancer
Like other cancers, liver cancer is caused by the overgrowth of cells, resulting in the formation of a tumor. Liver cancer is one of the most common cancers in the world, and is one of two types - primary liver cancer, which means that the cancer arises in the liver itself, or secondary liver cancer, which means it has spread from another site.
This chapter will include risk factors for liver cancer, causes, signs and symptoms and possible complications. Conventional treatments as well as natural supplements will be discussed.
Chapter 13 - Liver Transplantation
In the case of irreversible liver disease, a transplant sometimes becomes the only option. As with liver cancer, an in depth discussion is not within the scope of this book but this chapter will provide an overview, including indications for a liver transplant, donor lists, complications, immunosuppression and factors on living with a new liver.
Part 4: YOUR LIVER'S ROLE IN DISEASE
The connection between the liver and your other organs and diseases is almost totally overlooked so this section of the book addresses this important topic.
This part of the book shows how an ailing liver can manifest itself in a number of diseases previously thought to have no connection to the liver at all. But science is finding that this is not the case, and this part of the book demonstrates how keeping the liver healthy can help protect us against these major ailments.
Chapter 14 - Diabetes
Diabetes is a dangerous metabolic disorder that occurs when the body stops making insulin, or cannot use the insulin it has. Insulin is the hormone that regulates the amount of sugar (known as glucose) in the blood. Without insulin, the amount of glucose in the body rises, which results in damage to the body and its blood vessels, setting the stage for heart disease, stroke, blindness, amputation, and more
When diabetes is discussed, the focus is always on the pancreas, which makes sense in a simplistic way, because it is this gland that regulates the release of insulin in the body. But what is totally overlooked is the liver, which has as one of its main jobs to protect the pancreas.
This chapter will discuss the different types of diabetes, and how types 1 and the newly discovered 1.5 is caused by injury to the pancreas, but how type 2, which accounts to about 90 percent of cases, can be impacted by the health of the liver.
The fact that the liver impacts the pancreas can be seen in the connection between fatty liver disease and diabetes. An insulin-resistant liver ignores the signal of the hormone to stop sending glucose to the blood, raising the levels and increasing the risk for diabetes. Some studies have found that slim people who aren't considered ordinarily to be at risk for diabetes have fatty livers. These are indications that keeping a healthy liver can play a role in reducing the risk of diabetes.
This chapter also will discuss conventional treatments and natural supplements for diabetes.
Chapter 15 - Adrenal Stress
This chapter will describe the adrenal glands and their purpose, including their important role in manufacturing and releasing hormones, which keep the body functioning. This chapter will discuss the effect of an ailing liver on the adrenal glands, which can cause changes in emotional responses, heart rate and blood pressure. The controversy over "adrenal fatigue syndrome," will also be discussed here.
Chapter 16 - Obesity & Weight Gain
Most people don't think of their liver when they consider weight loss but the liver is responsible for helping to metabolize fat, and therefore optimizing your liver health can help in weight loss. When the liver is being overtaxed with toxins, it is not operating at its optimum efficiency, and therefore its role in metabolizing and helping rid the body of fats can be compromised. A stressed out, or sluggish, liver, can lead to weight gain, especially around the belly, so this chapter will focus on tip to prevent this problem, and help reenergize the liver so it can help play its proper role in metabolism and weight loss.
Chapter 17 - Skin Issues - Acne, Eczema & Psoriasis
Your liver acts as a filter. It literally cleanses your bloodstream of the toxins you are exposed to each day, and the waste products of metabolism that your body generates each day.
If your liver is not able to detoxify your bloodstream adequately, toxins must find an alternative route of excretion. When this occurs, the result can be skin problems, specifically acne.
But there is another aspect to acne as well, and that is its connection to your gut. Emerging science is finding that the microbiome of the gut (which is the bacteria that reside in the gut) can play a role in many inflammatory disorders, including three that affect the skin: acne, eczema, and psoriasis. So eating a diet that is anti-inflammation (and pro-liver) helps to promote clear skin. Conventional treatment and natural supplements will be recommended.
Chapter 18 - Gut Issues: Bloating, Constipation & IBS
The liver both produces bile, which is essential for digesting food and also acts to rid your body of toxic substances, so if it is not working properly, a variety of gut issues, including bloating, constipation and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can result. This is certainly true in the case of the serious liver disease, cirrhosis, but living a lifestyle that is beneficial to the liver can help with problems of bloating and constipation. In addition, research has also uncovered a potential link between nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and patients with IBS. Dietary recommendations and natural supplements will be recommended.
Chapter 19 - Gallbladder Disease & Gallstones
The gallbladder and the liver are connected by proximity and function:
the gallbladder is a small storage organ located inferior and posterior to the liver. Though small in size, the gallbladder plays an important role in our digestion of food. The gallbladder holds bile produced in the liver until it is needed for digesting fatty foods in the duodenum of the small intestine.
The liver can play a role in the production of gallstones in two ways:
the bile produced by the liver contains two much cholesterol, or the liver is producing two much bilirubin, which is a chemical that's produced when the body breaks down red blood cells. Dietary changes, including adding more fruits and vegetables (especially sodium-rich vegetables) can help, as can keeping a balanced diet and reducing excess meat. Certain natural supplements can also help.
Chapter 20 - SIBO
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) occurs when there are excess bacteria in the small intestine. SIBO often happens because of lack of movement of the small intestine.
SIBO is an abnormal number of bacteria in the small intestine that can lead to the following:
bloating and increased passing of gas (flatulence)
diarrhea or constipation
Conventional treatment and supplements will be recommended.
PART 5: HOW TO KEEP A HEALTHY LIVER
Chapter 21 - Liver Detox or Not?
Since one of the chief jobs of the liver is to detoxify the body of toxins, there is a certain irony in contemplating a liver detox. But, as the book points out, there are many things that place stress on the liver. This chapter will include identifying toxins, signs of toxic buildup in the liver, and how to create a personal liver detox plan.
Chapter 22 - The Pro-Liver Diet
This chapter outlines a nutritional plan that everyone can use to have not only a healthy liver, but a healthy brain and heart as well, because the principles are the same - following a low-fat diet, with at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily, no more than a slice of whole-grain bread, and restricting high-glycemic carbohydrates. Fiber is also important, as is drinking plenty of water. This chapter will also include a list of "super foods," that particularly benefit a healthy liver, as well as special tips for people living with liver disease. Supplements that boost liver health in general will also be included.
Chapter 23 - Exercise for Liver Health
Exercise benefits your entire body and your liver is no exception. But there are some special reasons that exercise is important, and that's because it boosts the liver's special powers. Exercise helps balance glucose levels, and also reduce cholesterol in the blood (and the liver) as well. Exercise, like a healthy diet and weight loss, is extremely important for people with fatty liver disease. This chapter will also include special supplements for people who exercise.
GLOSSARY & INDEX