Holistic nutritionist Bernadette W. Pacana-Yap and her liver-loving plate.
PHOTO BY BERNADETTE PACANA-YAP
VANCOUVER – Did you know that our liver is the largest solid organ inside the body and that it plays more than 500 vital functions?
In digestion, the liver’s main function is to process the nutrients absorbed by the small intestine. It is the energy center of the body and breaks down stored glycogen into glucose.
The liver also creates bile, which is important in breaking down fats and neutralizing excessive stomach acid.
The liver detoxifies potentially harmful chemicals and waste from metabolism, and toxins that enter the body through medicine, alcohol, cigarette, etc. These are just a few of its functions.
A sluggish or overloaded liver can lead to digestive issues such as slow metabolism, gas, bloating, and constipation. It can also cause sugar cravings, fatigue and fuzzy thinking (because it helps with blood sugar regulation.
Unhealthy liver can also cause hormonal imbalances and inflammatory diseases like diabetes, arthritis and high blood pressure.
To support our precious liver, consume liver-loving foods such as cruciferous vegetables, dark leafy greens, dandelion, milk thistle, artichokes and bitter foods.
Avoid refined or processed sugar and carbohydrates. You must also keep yourself hydrated with filtered water and limit meat and dairy consumption.
Avoid toxins from cigarettes, alcohol, over the counter drugs and beauty products.
Get plenty of sleep and rest. Detox with juice cleanse or fast, if possible.
I did a long liver overhaul. My body needed it. I am so happy I did it! I have so much energy now, very minimal cravings even for sweets (considering that I have a sweet tooth). No more skin irritations, and I feel great!
My plate of healthy eats include artichoke, purple cabbage, quinoa with lentils, arugula, cherry tomatoes, brussel sprouts, avocado and sauerkraut. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar or dressing and you are good to go!
Bernadette W. Pacana-Yap is a holistic nutritionist and certified yoga instructor based in Vancouver, British Columbia. Follow her on facebook.com/bernadette.pacana
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