Detoxing & The Importance of Your Liver

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Are you considering doing a detox/cleanse, or doing one now?

Our primary organs of detoxification are the liver, kidneys, lymphatics, and the colon. Any program that you’re on should be targeting these primary emunctories, especially the liver. 

Think of the liver as the body’s filter. It has a huge job, performing around 500 detox reactions per second. And even in the healthiest of people, it gets bogged down really easily in today’s environment. 

Think about it; the liver has to detox EVERYTHING we’re exposed to. This means all the air pollution that we breathe, all the chemicals in our skin care products, all the processing of our foods, all the chemicals in our water, etc. 

It also detoxes the natural waste products of our regular metabolism, breaking down all of our hormones when we’re done with them.

Add in things like coffee, alcohol, drugs, and a not so healthy diet (the liver needs vitamins and minerals to do its job), and you’ve got problems.

In Chinese medicine, the liver’s emotion is anger. If you find yourself feeling frustrated and irritable a lot of the time, this can be a sign that your liver may need some help.

Another sign is acne. When the liver and other primary detox organs aren’t working as well as they should, the secondary detox organs pick up the slack. The skin is one of those organs; it should really only be detoxing a small amount of waste in your sweat. Acne is a sign that your skin is detoxing a lot more than it should be.

In TCM the liver also controls our periods and breasts, so if you’ve got a clotty and/or stringy flow, lots of PMS, and tender (even fibrocystic) breasts, these are all signs that we need to do some work on your liver.

On the face, each feature represents a different organ. The liver opens into the eye, so any eye conditions (even simple chronic dryness) can represent liver issues.

Spiritually, a well functioning liver helps us to have a sense of direction and purpose in life. It has a very intimate relationship with the Gallbladder, so if you have stones or if you’ve had this removed, this can be detrimental to the liver.

Watch for my next few posts where I’ll share some specific things to do and avoid while detoxing. A cleanse can be a really great way to give your body the shift that it needs.


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