The purpose of this article is to provide you with some detail about another diet I have tried and tested and found successful The Liver Cleanse Diet Plan. This diet is a little different, firstly you can incorporate it with any way of eating you follow, keto, vegan, vegetarian because its focus is eating preservative-free and raw. Secondly, its primary result is not weight loss, although this does occur, the result is a cleansed and better functioning liver able to handle what you throw at it occasionally.
We put a lot of trust in retailers these days and have moved away from planting vegetable gardens and running small farms where we know what has gone into the soil and the animals.
Do you know exactly what you are eating?
Do you have concerns about preservatives and what they are doing to your body?
Do you have signs and symptoms that include any of the following?
- Skin and eyes that appear yellowish (jaundice)
- Abdominal pain and swelling.
- Swelling in the legs and ankles.
- Itchy skin.
- Dark urine colour.
- Pale stool colour.
- Chronic fatigue.
- Nausea or vomiting.
- White film on your tongue.
Firstly you probably need to seek medical advice if you have any of the above symptoms (less the white film on your tongue) and secondly, there is every possibility your liver needs a detox or cleanse.
The reason I tried a liver cleanse diet plan was that I was in my early twenties and felt that I had been out drinking and partying a lot and was simply not looking after myself. I felt a bit grotty, my exercise was a struggle, my eyes weren’t bright and my skin and hair were drab.
I followed Dr Sandra Cabots Liver Cleansing Diet book because it has a great plan and the recipes to support that plan.
She writes ‘Presenting a detailed eight-week plan for promoting good health and longevity by effectively cleansing the liver, this best-selling guide comes complete with groundbreaking recipes for healing soup and raw juice concoctions. Extensively revised and updated, this revolutionary manual contains informative sections that examine natural therapies for revitalizing the liver including reversing a fatty liver, nutritional medicine for hepatitis C and B, how to fight childhood obesity, and statistics showing why drug therapy alone is generally not successful in the long term.’
Twelve vital principles to improve liver function
- Drink 8-12 glass of water daily as this helps to cleanse the liver and kidneys and aids with weight loss. Your body requires small and frequent sips of water otherwise your cells shrink with dehydration and their membranes dry out. There is a higher risk of Alzheimer’s disease in people who do not drink water. Avoid large amounts of fluid with meals.
- Avoid eating large amounts of sugar, especially refined sugar, as the liver will convert this into fat and cholesterol. Fat can cause fatty degeneration of organs or can be transferred to other parts of the body for storage. Avoid all artificial sweeteners as these are toxic to the liver.
- Don’t become obsessed with measuring calories, if you stick to the meal plans in Dr Cabot’s Liver Cleansing Dietyour liver will improve and weight loss will follow.
- Ditch the scales and swap them out with a measuring tape. Measure once at the start, once in the middle and then again at the end
- Avoid foods you are allergic to or that you know from experience upset you. Always chew your food slowly and thoroughly, as digestion begins with saliva being mixed with food in the mouth. As people age, the production of hydrochloric acid in the stomach often becomes inadequate for the efficient digestion of proteins. This can be overcome by sipping a small glass of water containing one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar during every meal (containing protein foods).
- Listen to your body, don’t eat if you’re not hungry. Have a raw juice, a piece of fruit, a small raw vegetable salad or a glass of water instead. Conversely, don’t put up with hunger pangs. Far too many people place their mealtimes around the clock and will eat at, say, 8.00 am, 1.00 pm and 7.00 pm, come hail or shine, appetite or not. It’s much healthier to place your mealtimes around your hunger and pay little heed to the clock. If you are in the habit of eating regular meals when you are not hungry, your liver will be working far too hard and will suffer from excessive wear and tear.
- Be Aware of Good Intestinal Hygiene as the liver must filter out and destroy any bacteria and viruses present in our food. Too many unfriendly organisms, such as salmonella or shigella bacteria, may make us seriously ill and also permanently damage the liver. To reduce this risk, only eat fresh foods, and avoid the regular reheating of food as bacteria breed in stored cooked foods, especially meats. Never reheat food more than once. And always wash your hands before eating. Many packaged and processed foods are laden with preservatives, yet they are still full of unfriendly organisms in a dormant state. As soon as this food hits your intestines, the preservatives wear off and the bugs begin to grow inside you. Especially avoid preserved meats.
- Do Not Eat if You Feel Stressed or Anxious because during these states your blood flow is diverted away from the intestines and liver to other areas of the body.
- Check if Organically-Grown Fresh Produce, Free of Pesticides, is Available in Your Area. If using eggs and chickens, always buy free-range. Buy products containing natural ingredients and avoid processed foods containing artificial chemicals such as preservatives, colouring, flavourings and artificial sweeteners.
- Obtain Your Protein from Diverse Sources, Including Legumes. You can obtain protein from chicken (preferably free-range), fish and eggs. However, there are many meals in which protein is obtained from legumes, grains, cereals, nuts and seeds. First-class protein from combinations of these sources will be just as complete as protein from animal sources and contains all the eight essential amino acids.
- Choose Your Bread Wisely. It is important to eat only good quality bread. Go to a health food store and buy bread free of artificial chemicals. If you have irritable bowel syndrome, use stone-ground bread, which has a fine texture and are free of little grainy bits.
- Avoid Constipation by eating plenty of raw fruits and vegetables and drinking water throughout the day. By avoiding constipation you will avoid the growth of unfriendly organisms in the large bowel. To increase the amount of friendly acidophilus and other lactobacilli bacteria, you may take powdered forms of these or eat Soy bean yogurt.
Weeks one and two
Week one and two are focused on easing your body into a new routine without sending it into shock. During these weeks there you remove the following:
- Dairy (cheese, milk and egg yolks)
- Processed foods e.g. anything in cans, anything in packets where there are preservatives listed on the rear.
Your body will recognise that you have removed these items, especially if you are a regular consumer of any of them. Be prepared to go through a phase of headaches or general lethargy. Drink water! Drinking water will ease any symptoms you may experience as you navigate the first two weeks of this diet. Believe me, the liver cleanse diet plan is worth it in the long run. A little pain for a lot of gains.
Weeks three to six
Weeks three to six you get into the heart of the good stuff, this is where the resetting starts working. In these four weeks, you continue with the items removed in weeks one and two and also, remove the following.
- Chicken, red meat
Four weeks isn’t long and you will have already started a bit of a routine so the key is to keep following it. My next blog post will be about creating and maintaining routine so if you want to try the liver cleanse diet plan and you’re not sure you’ll stick at it, take a look at my post about setting goals and wait for my next post about creating a routine.
Weeks seven and eight
At this stage of the diet, you will be starting to notice changes in how you feel. More energy? Better skin? If not, you can always extend this phase-out another two weeks.
If you slip up at any stage in the diet just get back on track immediately and add yourself a couple of days at the end. This doesn’t mean a week of partying means you can trade for a week of liver cleanse at the end though.
During these two weeks, the liver cleanse diet plan allows you to reintroduce the things you removed while staying aligned with the twelve principles. It’s recommended you reap the benefits of the cleanse and keep the processed and preservative heavy food items out of your diet or at least only occasionally eat them.
The book provides a recommended maintenance phase but you can adapt that to how you want to adjust your food lifestyle after completing the liver cleanse diet plan. I went on to try out being a vegetarian for three years but I struggled with a lot of vegetarian food being full of cheese and dairy. These days it’s not like that, there are so many options to choose from. Food retailers and cafes have had to adjust to the change in diets its population has thrown at it through the years so you can now maintain your liver in a healthy state easily should you so wish!
Remember, I followed the Dr Cabot’s Liver Cleansing Diet but there are others out there and simply choosing to eat a mostly preservative-free, organic, healthy diet will set you on a good path to a healthy liver.
Don’t hesitate to ask me anything you may want to know after reading my article.
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