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10 Superfoods That Effectively Cleanse Your Liver For Better Digestion

10 Superfoods That Effectively Cleanse Your Liver For Better Digestion

Think of it this way, if the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines were all students of a class; then the liver is the teacher. The role of the liver is simple and complex at the same time; it regulates all of the digestion process and ensures proper distribution of the post-digestion nutrients to the body as well. [1]

The liver also plays a very important role, along with the kidneys, to detoxify the body of the waste produced during digestion as well as environmental toxins. To keep the body free of waste and toxins, as well as for maximum nutrient absorption; you need to cleanse your liver for it to be in peak condition. The good news is that there are commonplace foods you can eat, which cleanse your liver and keep it at its healthiest. Give these 10 liver-friendly foods a whirl…

1. Garlic

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    A small amount of garlic, eaten raw and crushed, activates the liver enzymes and helps it detoxify the body that much faster. The sulfur compounds in garlic, as well as its arginine and selenium work together to cleanse your liver for it to be at optimum health. [2]

    2. Leafy Greens

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      Green leafy vegetables such as arugula, spinach, fenugreek and mustard greens, dandelion and chicory have the ability to soak up environmental toxins from the bloodstream like sponges. They can neutralize heavy metals and other toxicity – and so give the liver function a much-needed respite and cleanse your liver alongside. [3]

      3. Apples

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        Apples are rich in the soluble fiber pectin, which aids the body in getting rid of wastes and toxins very effectively. This, in turn, takes some stress off the liver so that it can cleanse itself and work healthily. Probably why the ‘apple a day keeps the doctor away’ adage is still alive… [4]

        4. Avocados

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          Not just great baby food, avocados are great for the liver as well. Avocados aid the body into producing a valuable antioxidant glutathione, which is basically the primary antioxidant needed by the liver to detoxify itself as well the whole body. Greens, garlic and cruciferous vegetables also help the body produce glutathione. [5]

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          5. Cold-pressed oils

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            Olive, Flaxseed and Hempseed oils are great for the liver – the healthy fat content, as well as the phenolic antioxidant compounds of these oils, soak up toxins and aid liver in functioning at its optimum. The heart benefits of these oils are an added plus! [6]

            6. Switching grains

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              Not to say that wheat and rice is unhealthy, but if you eat only one or two types of grain; you end up stressing the liver as it has to deal with those few toxins (like gluten) over and over again. Switch back and forth between healthy whole grains like quinoa, millet, bulgur, buckwheat and even the locally grown produce. [7]

              7. Citrus fruits

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                Lemons and limes are high in vitamin C – and vitamin C basically dissolves the toxins into water-soluble chemicals and lets the kidneys flush them out in the form of urine. This takes a load off the liver and helps it detoxify itself. [8]

                8. Turmeric

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                  Think of this as liver’s favorite spice. Turmeric revs up the liver enzymes, boosting body detoxification and cleansing your liver. Most importantly, this spice also helps repair damaged liver tissue too! [9]

                  9. Cruciferous vegetables

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                    The tree-like cruciferous veggies like broccoli and cauliflower increase the body’s glucosinolate levels which are organic sulfur compounds that work with antioxidants like folate, vitamin C and flavonoids to cleanse your liver, and the body of harmful toxins and waste products as well. [10]

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                    10. Walnuts

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                      The omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts not only make it brain food, but also a great food to cleanse your liver. Enriched with amino acid arginine, walnuts also neutralize the ammonia in the body thereby taking some stress off the poor organ. [11]

                      What more can I do to help my liver?

                      As Hippocrates said, let your food be your medicine and your medicine your food. Along with eating these liver-friendly super foods; to spring-cleanse the liver, you also need to drink plenty water and reduce your sugar intake. Remember to give yourself some TLC as well as exercise and do cut back on that nicotine, alcohol and caffeine… [12]

                      Reference

                      [1]http://www.laparoscopic.md/digestion/liver
                      [2]http://www.livestrong.com/article/346836-benefits-of-garlic-on-liver/
                      [3]http://nourishholisticnutrition.com/foods-your-liver-will-love/
                      [4]http://www.liversupport.com/8-great-foods-for-detoxing-the-liver/
                      [5]http://www.immunehealthscience.com/glutathione-foods.html
                      [6]https://www.liverdoctor.com/8-things-you-must-know-have-fatty-liver/
                      [7]https://www.hindawi.com/journals/ije/2013/585876/
                      [8]http://www.belmarrahealth.com/citrus-fruits-and-liver-function/
                      [9]http://naturalsociety.com/turmeric-repairs-damaged-liver-tissues-promotes-liver-health/
                      [10]http://www.liversupport.com/8-great-foods-for-detoxing-the-liver/
                      [11]http://www.chicagonow.com/get-fit-chicago/2013/12/10-foods-that-detox-your-body-and-cleanse-your-liver/
                      [12]http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-patricia-fitzgerald/spring-cleaning-10-steps_b_177154.html

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                      Last Updated on October 16, 2018

                      The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

                      The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

                      It’s well past midnight and you’ve got to get up in less than six hours. You toss and turn all night. Before you know it, another hour passes by and you start panicking.

                      If I don’t get to sleep in the next 30 minutes, I’m going to be exhausted tomorrow!”

                      One thing is for sure, you’re not alone. Over 70M+ Americans have stated that they don’t get the proper sleep they need at night.[1] So what could possibly be causing this insomnia epidemic?

                      Throughout my entrepreneurial journey of building my language learning company, I have experimented and researched dozens of best sleep practices. Some have flopped but a few have dramatically improved the quality of my life and work.

                      In this article, I’ll look into the reason why you’re sleep deprived and how to sleep through the night tonight.

                      Why you can’t sleep through the night

                      The first step to improving anything is getting to the bottom of the root problem. Different studies have shown the reasons why most people cannot sleep well at night.[2] Here are the main ones that the average person faces:

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                      Stress

                      If you’ve ever stayed up at night worrying about something, know that it’s a major sleep inhibitor. When you’re feeling stress, your mind and body becomes more activated, making it incredibly difficult to fall asleep. Even when you do manage to sleep, it won’t be deep enough to help you feel rested the next day.

                      Exposure to blue light before sleep time

                      We’re exposed to harmful blue light on a daily basis through the use of our digital screens. If you’ve never heard of blue light, it’s part of the visible light spectrum that suppresses melatonin, our sleep hormones. Other harmful effects include digital eye strains and macular cellular damage.

                      While daytime exposure to blue light is not very harmful, night time exposure tricks our brain into thinking it’s daytime. By keeping your brain alert and suppressing melatonin, your mind is unable to shut down and relax before bedtime.

                      Eating close to bedtime

                      Eating too late can actually be an issue for many people, especially those who are older than 40. The reason is, eating before laying down increases the chances of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), in which stomach acid backflows into the esophagus.

                      Another reason not to eat too late is sleep quality. Even if you manage to sleep right after eating, it’s likely that you’ll wake up tired. Instead of letting your body rest during sleep, it has to digest the food that was entered before bedtime.

                      Rule of thumb: eat 3-4 hours before bedtime.

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                      Medical conditions

                      In some cases, it could be medical conditions that cause your sleep problems. If you can’t relate yourself to the above reasons or any of these common sleep problem causes, you should visit the doctor.

                      The vicious sleep cycle

                      The biggest danger to repeating the bad habits mentioned above is the negative cycle that it can take you through. A bad night’s sleep can affect not only your energy but your willpower and decision making skills.

                      Here’s an example of a bad sleep pattern:

                      You get a bad night’s sleep
                      –> You feel tired and stressful throughout the day.
                      –> You compensate it with unhealthy habits (for example junk food, skipping exercises, watching Netflix etc.)
                      –> You can’t sleep well (again) the next night.

                        You can imagine what could happen if this cycle repeats over a longer period of time.

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                        How to sleep better (throughout the night)

                        To help you break the vicious cycle and stop waking up in the middle of the night, I’ll explain to you a list of actionable steps to solve your trouble staying asleep.

                        1. Take control over the last 90 minutes of your night

                        What you do (or don’t do) before bedtime have significant impact on the quality of your sleep. Many times, it can be the difference between staying up until 4am and sleeping like a baby.

                        Here are a few suggestions:

                        • Go from light to dark – Darkness stimulates production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Turn off unused light around the house, and think about investing into warm light that you can use in the bedroom before bedtime.
                        • Avoid screens (or wear blue light blocking glasses) – Keep the bedroom a technology-free zone as the light from electronic devices can disturb your sleep. If you need to work, wear blue light blocking glasses (also known as computer glasses) throughout or before you sleep to prevent sleep disruption.
                        • Find an activity that helps you to wind down  This could be anything that calms you down, and reduces thinking (especially unnecessary stress). Fir example, listening to soothing/good feel music, taking a hot bath, reading or meditating.
                        • Keep any electronics you have on the other side of the room or outside the room – One of the most harmful things that can disrupt your sleep is the notifications you get from your smartphones. The simplest way to avoid this is to keep it away from you.
                        • Create a bedtime routine – A night routine is a couple of things you do prior to going to bed. By doing these things every night, you’ll have a more restful and high-quality sleep. Learn how to pick up a night routine here: The Ultimate Night Routine Guide to Sleep Better and Wake Up Productive

                        2. Eat the right nutrients (and avoid the wrong ones)

                        What you eat (not just when we eat) plays a critical role in your sleep quality. If you’re ever in doubt of what to eat to improve your sleep, take the following into consideration:

                        • Kiwi – This green fruit may be the ultimate pre-bed snack. When volunteers ate two kiwis an hour before hitting the hay, they slept almost a full extra hour. Kiwis are full of vitamins C and E, serotonin and folate—all of which may help you snooze.
                        • Soy foods – Foods made with soy such as tofu, miso and edamame, are rich in isoflavones. These compounds increase the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that influences the body’s sleep-wake cycle.
                        • Fiber-rich foods – Eating more fiber could be key for better sleep. Eating fiber was associated with more restorative slow-wave sleep—the more you eat, the better you sleep—per a study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Fiber prevents blood sugar surges that may lower melatonin. Get a fiber boost from beans, artichokes, bran cereal and quinoa.
                        • Salmon – Most fish, especially salmon, halibut and tuna boost vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin— a sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness.

                        3. Adjust your sleep temperature

                        Once you’ve gone through the first 2 recommendations, the last step to experiment with is temperature. According to Sleep.org, the ideal temperature for sleep is 60-67 Farenheit. This may be cooler than what most people are used to, but keep in mind that our body temperature changes once we fall asleep.

                        Rule of thumb: sleeping in cooler temperature is better for sleep quality than warmer temperature.

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                        Find out how to maintain the optimal temperature to sleep better here: How to Sleep Faster with the Best Temperature

                        Sleep better form now on

                        Congrats on making it to the end of this guide on sleep. If you’re serious about taking the necessary steps in improving your sleep, remember to take it one step at a time.

                        I recommend trying just one of the steps mentioned such as taking a hot bath, blocking out blue light at night, or sleeping in cooler temperature. From there, see how it impacts your sleep quality and you can keep doing what works, and throw away what doesn’t.

                        As long as you follow these steps cautiously and diligently, I know you’ll see improved results in your sleep!

                        Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

                        Reference

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