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If You Want To Boost Your Fertility, Take Good Care Of Your Liver

If You Want To Boost Your Fertility, Take Good Care Of Your Liver

Ever heard of someone with a ‘bilious temper’ or someone who is ‘choleric?’ Well, even before the advent of modern medicine, the liver was associated with anger and irritability; ancient Greek doctors attributed an ill-temper to an excess of yellow bile produced in the liver.

Thanks to modern medicine though, not only have we found that the liver does in fact have an, albeit more nuanced, connection to our tempers, we have also discovered that a healthy, functioning liver has a strong link within our bodies to the creation of life itself. When we talk about the liver, we seldom think about fertility; however, recent research has shown that it plays a very important role.

Our Livers And Fertility

“This is the first time it has been demonstrated how important the liver is in fertility,” said Adriana Maggi of The University of Milan in Italy. She was speaking, in 2011, of her team’s research that showed how estrogen receptors in the liver play a crucial role in fertility.

It was revealed that mice on a calorie-restricted diet, as well as those lacking estrogen receptors in the liver, showed a decline in a hormone known as IGF-1, which promotes adequate growth of the lining of the uterus, as well as normal progression of the estrous cycle. But when the calorie-restricted mice were given more protein in their diets, their reproductive systems started to function properly again.[1] The same principle was tested with dietary fats and carbohydrates, and these had no effect on the estrogen receptors.

The findings have wide-ranging implications; they suggest that a diet low in protein and high in carbohydrates may adversely affect fertility. It may also explain, Maggi says, why people who are anorexic are generally infertile.

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Keeping Your Liver Healthy

Ray Chung, MD, medical director of the liver transplant program at Massachusetts General Hospital, has spoken in detail about ways we can look after our livers. “Taking care of your liver is far more about avoiding what’s bad than it is about eating or drinking things that are particularly nourishing to the liver,” he says.[2]

So it’s important not to drink too much alcohol, and watch out for certain medicines that can adversely affect your liver. After all, this crucial organ processes everything we ingest. However, it’s still important to avoid excess weight gain, as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease can cause great damage to the organ. Aside from exercise, diet can also play a role, as has been emphasized by the recent research carried out in Milan.

Foods We Should Avoid

Fast food contains most of the things we want to avoid if we’d like to maintain a healthy liver. Too much fat and sugar, including high fructose corn syrup, can cause serious damage to the liver. High amounts of salt in processed foods like sausages and bacon, meanwhile, can lead to fatty liver disease, while artificial sweeteners are also not recommended.

Increase Your Intake Of Liver-cleansing Foods

Garlic is often promoted in liver-cleansing diets. A small amount of this staple vegetable can activate liver enzymes that aid our bodies in flushing out toxins. One of the many health benefits[3] of green tea is that it is full of an antioxidant called catechin, known to assist liver function. Turmeric, which is used extensively in Indian cuisine is known to help us flush out dietary carcinogens. Avocados help us produce glutathione, a compound that promotes liver cleansing in our bodies. Leafy green vegetables as well as fruit rich in vitamin C will help to protect our livers. As suggested by the research carried out by Adriana Maggi and her team, a diet rich in protein will also help to activate the estrogen receptors in your liver, meaning that lean meats such as chicken and turkey may be a great addition for those looking to boost their fertility.

2 Great Recipes For Boosting Liver Health

1. Golden Milk

Golden milk is a drink that many people incorporate into their diets purely for its health benefits.[4] Among its many health benefits are its ability to boost the immune system as well as, of course, cleansing your liver. Black pepper helps to massively increase your body’s absorption of turmeric, along with its many benefits.

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turmeric-drink

    Step 1: Turmeric Paste

    Ingredients:

    • 1/4 cup of turmeric powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper
    • 1/2 cup of filtered water

    Directions:

    Mix all ingredients in a small sauce pan and mix well. Turn the heat to medium high and stir constantly until the mixture is a thick paste. This does not take long, so don’t walk away from the pan.

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    Let this mixture cool and then keep it in a small jar in the fridge.

    Step 2: Golden Milk

    Ingredients:

    • 1 cup of almond milk (hemp or coconut are also good options)
    • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
    • 1/4 teaspoon or more of turmeric paste
    • Honey

    Directions:

    1. Combine all the ingredients, except honey, in a saucepan.
    2. Turn the heat to medium.
    3. While heating, make sure to stir constantly, and do not allow the mixture to boil.
    4. Add honey to taste.

    Credit: Pinterest

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    2. Broccoli Detox Soup

    The name says it all. This soup is full of ingredients that will flush the toxins out of your body and result in healthy liver function.

    awesome-green
      Ingredients:

      • 2 cups broccoli florets
      • 2 celery stalks, finely diced
      • 1 onion, finely diced
      • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
      • 1 cup greens (kale, spinach, beet greens or any other available)
      • 1 parsnip, peeled and finely chopped
      • 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
      • 2 cups filtered water or low sodium vegetable broth
      • 1⁄2 tsp sea salt
      • 1⁄2 lemon, juice only
      • 1 tsp coconut oil
      • 1 tbsp chia seeds
      • Toasted mixed seeds and nuts, 1 teaspoon coconut milk, to garnish

      Directions:

      1. In a soup pot, heat the coconut oil, add the onion, garlic, carrot, parsnip, celery sticks, and broccoli, and cook over low heat for five minutes, stirring frequently.
      2. Add the filtered water or vegetable broth, bring to a boil, then cover the pot with a lid and let simmer for 5‐7 minutes, until the vegetables are tender, but not mushy.
      3. Stir in the greens, then transfer into the blender, add the chia seeds and lemon, and process to obtain a smooth cream.
      4. Top with toasted seeds and serve warm.

      Credit: The Awesome Green

      Featured photo credit: Netdoctor.co.uk via netdoctor.cdnds.net

      Reference

      [1] Science Daily: Liver, dietary proteins key in fertility
      [2] WebMD: How Not to Wreck Your Liver
      [3] Global Healing Centre: 8 Health Benefits of Green Tea
      [4] Top10 Home Remedies: 10 Health Benefits of Turmeric

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      Christopher Young

      Freelance Blogger, Writer and Journalist

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      Last Updated on August 20, 2019

      How to Control Your Thoughts and Be the Master of Your Mind

      How to Control Your Thoughts and Be the Master of Your Mind

      Your mind is the most powerful tool you have for the creation of good in your life, but if not used correctly, can also be the most destructive force in your life.

      Your mind, more specifically, your thoughts, affect your perception and therefore, your interpretation of reality. (And here’s Why Your Perception Is Your Reality.)

      I have heard that the average person thinks around 70,000 thoughts a day. That’s a lot, especially if they are unproductive, self-abusive and just a general waste of energy.

      You can let your thoughts run amok, but why would you? It is your mind, your thoughts; isn’t it time to take your power back? Isn’t it time to take control?

      Choose to be the person who is actively, consciously thinking your thoughts. Become the master of your mind.

      When you change your thoughts, you will change your feelings as well, and you will also eliminate the triggers that set off those feelings. Both of these outcomes provide you with a greater level of peace in your mind.

      I currently have few thoughts that are not of my own choosing or a response from my reprogramming. I am the master of my mind, so now my mind is quite peaceful. Yours can be too!

      Who Is Thinking My Thoughts?

      Before you can become the master of your mind, you must recognize that you are currently at the mercy of several unwanted “squatters” living in your mind, and they are in charge of your thoughts. If you want to be the boss of them, you must know who they are and what their motivation is, and then you can take charge and evict them.

      Here are four of the “squatters” in your head that create the most unhealthy and unproductive thoughts:

      1. The Inner Critic

      This is your constant abuser who is often a conglomeration of:

      • Other people’s words; many times your parents.
      • Thoughts you have created based on your own or other peoples expectations.
      • Comparing yourself to other people, including those in the media.
      • The things you told yourself as a result of painful experiences such as betrayal and rejection. Your interpretation creates your self-doubt and self-blame, which are most likely undeserved in cases of rejection and betrayal.

      The Inner Critic is motivated by pain, low self-esteem, lack of self-acceptance and lack of self-love.

      Why else would this person abuse you? And since this person is actually you– why else would you abuse yourself? Why would you let anyone treat you this badly?

      2. The Worrier

      This person lives in the future; in the world of “what ifs.”

      The Worrier is motivated by fear which is often irrational and with no basis for it. Occasionally, this person is motivated by fear that what happened in the past will happen again.

      3. The Reactor or Trouble-Maker

      This is the one that triggers anger, frustration and pain. These triggers stem from unhealed wounds of the past. Any experience that is even closely related to a past wound will set him off.

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      This person can be set off by words or feelings, and can even be set off by sounds and smells.

      The Reactor has no real motivation and has poor impulse control and is run by past programming that no longer serves you, if it ever did.

      4. The Sleep Depriver

      This can be a combination of any number of different squatters including the inner planner, the rehasher, and the ruminator, along with the inner critic and the worrier.

      The Sleep Depriver’s motivation can be:

      • As a reaction to silence, which he fights against
      • Taking care of the business you neglected during the day
      • Self-doubt, low self-esteem, insecurity and generalized anxiety
      • As listed above for the inner critic and worrier

      How can you control these squatters?

      How to Master Your Mind

      You are the thinker and the observer of your thoughts. You must pay attention to your thoughts so you can identify “who” is running the show; this will determine which technique you will want to use.

      Begin each day with the intention of paying attention to your thoughts and catching yourself when you are thinking undesirable thoughts.

      There are two ways to control your thoughts:

      • Technique A – Interrupt and replace them
      • Technique B – Eliminate them altogether

      This second option is what is known as peace of mind!

      The technique of interrupting and replacing is a means of reprogramming your subconscious mind. Eventually, the replacement thoughts will become the “go to” thoughts in the applicable situations.

      Use Technique A with the Inner Critic and Worrier; and Technique B with the Reactor and Sleep Depriver.

      For the Inner Critic

      When you catch yourself thinking something negative about yourself (calling yourself names, disrespecting yourself, or berating yourself), interrupt it.

      You can yell (in your mind), “Stop! No!” or, “Enough! I’m in control now.” Then, whatever your negative thought was about yourself, replace it with an opposite or counter thought or an affirmation that begins with “I am.”

      For example, if your thought is, “I’m such a loser,” you can replace it with, “I am a Divine Creation of the Universal Spirit. I am a perfect spiritual being learning to master the human experience. I am a being of energy, light, and matter. I am magnificent, brilliant, and beautiful. I love and approve of myself just as I am.”

      You can also have a dialogue with yourself with the intention of discrediting the ‘voice’ that created the thought, if you know whose voice it is:

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      “Just because so-and-so said I was a loser doesn’t make it true. It was his or her opinion, not a statement of fact. Or maybe they were joking and I took it seriously because I’m insecure.”

      If you recognize that you have recurring self-critical thoughts, you can write out or pre-plan your counter thoughts or affirmation so you can be ready. This is the first squatter you should evict, forcefully, if necessary:

      • They rile up the Worrier.
      • The names you call yourself become triggers when called those names by others, so he also maintains the presence of the Reactor.
      • They are often present when you try to fall asleep so he perpetuates the Sleep Depriver.
      • They are a bully and is verbally and emotionally abusive.
      • They are the destroyer of self-esteem. They convince you that you’re not worthy. They’re a liar! In the interest of your self-worth, get them out!

      Eliminate your worst critic and you will also diminish the presence of the other three squatters.

      Replace them with your new best friends who support, encourage, and enhance your life. This is a presence you want in your mind.

      For the Worrier

      Prolonged anxiety is mentally, emotionally and physically unhealthy. It can have long-term health implications.

      Fear initiates the fight or flight response, creates worry in the mind and creates anxiety in the body.

      You should be able to recognize a “worry thought” immediately by how you feel. The physiological signs that the fight or flight response of fear has kicked in are:

      • Increased heart rate, blood pressure, or surge of adrenaline
      • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
      • Muscles tense

      Use the above stated method to interrupt any thought of worry and then replace it. But this time you will replace your thoughts of worry with thoughts of gratitude for the outcome you wish for.

      If you believe in a higher power, this is the time to engage with it. Here is an example:

      Instead of worrying about my loved ones traveling in bad weather, I say the following (I call it a prayer):

      “Thank you great spirit for watching over _______. Thank you for watching over his/her car and keeping it safe, road-worthy, and free of maintenance issues without warning. Thank you for surrounding him/her with only safe, conscientious, and alert drivers. And thank you for keeping him/her safe, conscientious, and alert.”

      Smile when you think about it or say it aloud, and phrase it in the present tense; both of these will help you feel it and possibly even start to believe it.

      If you can visualize what you are praying for, the visualization will enhance the feeling so you will increase the impact in your vibrational field.

      Now take a calming breath, slowly in through your nose, and slowly out through the mouth. Take as many as you like!

      Replacing fearful thoughts with gratitude will decrease reactionary behavior, taking the steam out of the Reactor.

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      For example:

      If your child gets lost in the mall, the typical parental reaction that follows the fearful thoughts when finding them is to yell at them.

      “I told you never to leave my sight.” This reaction just adds to the child’s fear level from being lost in the first place. Plus, it also teaches them that mom and/or dad will get mad when he or she makes a mistake, which may make them lie to you or not tell you things in the future.

      Change those fearful thoughts when they happen:

      “Thank You (your choice of Higher Power) for watching over my child and keeping him safe. Thank you for helping me find him soon.”

      Then, when you see your child after this thought process, your only reaction will be gratitude, and that seems like a better alternative for all people involved.

      For the Trouble-Maker, Reactor or Over-Reactor

      Permanently eliminating this squatter will take a bit more attention and reflection after the fact to identify and heal the causes of the triggers; but until then, you can prevent the Reactor from getting out of control by initiating conscious breathing as soon as you recognize his presence.

      The Reactor’s thoughts or feelings activate the fight or flight response just like with the Worrier. The physiological signs of his presence will be the same. With a little attention, you should be able to tell the difference between anxiety, anger, frustration, or pain:

      • Increased heart rate and blood pressure; surge of adrenaline
      • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
      • Muscles tension

      I’m sure you’ve heard the suggestion to count to ten when you get angry—well, you can make those ten seconds much more productive if you are breathing consciously during that time.

      Conscious breathing is as simple as it sounds; just be conscious of your breathing. Pay attention to the air going in and coming out.

      Breathe in through your nose:

      • Feel the air entering your nostrils.
      • Feel your lungs filling and expanding.
      • Focus on your belly rising.

      Breathe out through your nose:

      • Feel your lungs emptying.
      • Focus on your belly falling.
      • Feel the air exiting your nostrils.

      Do this for as long as you like. Leave the situation if you want. This gives the adrenaline time to normalize.

      Now you can address the situation with a calmer, more rational perspective and avoid damaging behavior.

      One of the troubles this squatter causes is that it adds to the sleep depriver’s issues. By evicting, or at least controlling the Reactor, you will decrease reactionary behavior, which will decrease the need for the rehashing and ruminating that may keep you from falling asleep.

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      Master your mind and stop the Reactor from bringing stress to you and your relationships!

      For the Sleep Depriver

      (They’re made up of the Inner Planner, the Rehasher and the Ruminator, along with the Inner Critic and the Worrier.)

      I was plagued with a very common problem: not being able to turn off my mind at bedtime. This inability prevented me from falling asleep and thus, getting a restful and restorative night’s sleep.

      Here’s how I mastered my mind and evicted the Sleep Depriver and all his cronies.

      1. I started by focusing on my breathing—paying attention to the rise and fall of my belly—but that didn’t keep the thoughts out for long. (Actually, I now start with checking my at-rest mouth position to keep me from clenching.)
      2. Then I came up with replacement strategy that eliminated uncontrolled thinking—imagining the word in while breathing in and thinking the word out when breathing out. I would (and do) elongate the word to match the length of my breath.

      When I catch myself thinking, I shift back to in, out. With this technique, I am still thinking, sort of, but the wheels are no longer spinning out of control. I am in control of my mind and I choose quiet.

      From the first time I tried this method I started to yawn after only a few cycles and am usually asleep within ten minutes.

      For really difficult nights, I add an increase of attention by holding my eyes in a looking-up position (Closed, of course!). Sometimes I try to look toward my third eye but that really hurts my eyes.

      If you have trouble falling asleep because you can’t shut off your mind, I strongly recommend you try this technique. I still use it every night. You can start sleeping better tonight!

      You can also use this technique any time you want to:

      • Fall back to sleep if you wake up too soon.
      • Shut down your thinking.
      • Calm your feelings.
      • Simply focus on the present moment. 

      The Bottom Line

      Your mind is a tool, and like any other tool, it can be used for constructive purposes or for destructive purposes.

      You can allow your mind to be occupied by unwanted, undesirable and destructive tenants, or you can choose desirable tenants like peace, gratitude, compassion, love, and joy.

      Your mind can become your best friend, your biggest supporter, and someone you can count on to be there and encourage you. The choice is yours!

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      Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

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