Love your Liver
Should you be concerned about the health of your liver?
When was the last time you emptied the trap in the U-bend. I bet you have only done it when the sink got blocked!
Well your liver is the U-bend of your body. It deals with all the unpleasant stuff that swills around your system. It fights infection, removes toxins, controls cholesterol and much, much more, and you may not get signs that you have a problem till it is too late – is it time to take care of your drains??
Liver disease is the third most common cause of premature death in the U.K and the problem is rising say the British liver trust. There has been a 400% increase over the last 30years and yet many of us are unaware of how dangerous and how common it is.
We tend to think of the red nosed man in his 80’s who loves a burger and a whisky chaser or a hard drinking 30-40 year old – who’s alcohol abuse has killed their livers. In fact the average age of death from liver disease is 57, and effects woman as much as men It is a significant risk in women over 45 for 2 main reasons –
- This age group tends to be over weight
- And this group is drinking more than it ever has in the past.
So it is very easy to be in both categories. It doesn’t take much to push you to the limit only a medium sized glass of wine everyday – that falls into risky drinking of over 14 units per week.
Our lifestyles have changed so much that more drinking is done at home, and we are aware that alcohol is a carcinogenic – classes the same as nicotine and asbestos by W.H.O (the world health organisation) so in fact there is no such thing as safe drinking- only drinking knowing the risks attached. As a nation we consume far too many refined carbohydrates and refined sugars as well as too much fat. The biggest problem with Liver disease is normally there are no symptoms until the condition is quite advanced, then treatment isn’t as effective. And you will need lots of medical support by that stage. The best plan of attack is be honest with yourself – you are the person best placed to decide if you are at risk
Liver cleansing, or detox diets
The experts say don’t waste your time or money there is no evidence at all to show any benefits from these methods. The only thing you can do is lose weight stop drinking and exercise. A good balanced healthy diet reducing the amount of refined food consumed.
Not all Bad,
The liver is a very robust organ, and facing up to your unhealthy lifestyle and making changes will have benefits. The liver can regenerate and a positive outcome achieved if lifestyle changes are made in time.
Even if the liver is damaged beyond regeneration with a change of habit, it can recover even if not fully.
If you want to have a drink occasionally that’s fine, but remember these 3 things: Take a Measure –Fashions change and wine glasses are a lot bigger than they were only 6 glasses 175ml take you over your 14 units a week limit. Take a Break – If you have a drink most evenings it’s important to have two to three consecutive days off with no alcohol consumed every week, give you liver chance to recover. Take the Test – The British Liver trust has a screener for you to assess if you are at risk find it at https://www.britishlivertrust.org.uk/our-work/love-your-liver/love-liver-health-screener/