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Did you give up the booze for the month of January to detox your liver? The internet has been ablaze with talk about Cancer Research UK’s Dryathlon Campaign and Alcohol Concern’s Dry January fundraising appeals.
In spite of all the warnings about the dangers of drinking alcohol the rates of liver disease is rising dramatically. According to researchers deaths among women from alcohol is rising alarmingly but men are twice as likely to die from alcohol related diseases
Giving up alcohol for the month of January sounds good, especially
if you drank a lot over the festive season. But, doctors are saying
that detox is futile because your body is perfectly capable of getting
rid of all the nasties itself and giving up the booze for a month will
do nothing for your long-term health.
I beg to differ!
Detox is not futile at all.
The evidence that we are all awash with chemicals seems to indicate to me that our bodies are not perfectly capable of getting rid of them by themselves. Researchers have, in fact, discovered that while some people can expel toxins fairly well well others can’t.
Even though there may not be much published scientific evidence to support the view that detox will improve your health there is plenty of anecdotal evidence that it does.
I agree that it stands to reason that giving up alcohol for a month to detox your liver and then thinking that you can go back to drinking like a fish for the rest of the year is complete madness.
But, giving up alcohol combined with eating a diet of liver friendly foods that help to gently detox your liver is good for your liver as well as your general health.
I am not a big fan of detoxing in January if it means drinking a lot of cold juices and eating cold raw foods and salads in wintertime. I tend to agree with the Naturopathic view that the best time to detox is in the Spring when the weather is warmer and the new season’s vegetables start to appear in the shops.
Winter is the time to nourish and rebuild the body.
It’s a good time to make that New Year’s resolution to eat a “health first” diet. That can include a diet of warm nourishing foods that will help to gently detox your liver like the Detox Soups for Winter Cleansing or spice up your food with Turmeric to aid liver detox.
Your liver is probably the most hard working organ of your body. It helps fight infections and cleans your blood. It detoxes foreign chemicals that get into your body as well as the ones naturally produced by the normal metabolic processes. It also helps digest food, stores energy for when you need it and certain vitamins. It controls the production and excretion of cholesterol too.
So you can see that anything that keeps your liver from doing its job puts your life in danger. Liver cells have the amazing ability to regenerate themselves. A liver can fully regenerate up to 75% of damaged tissue provided it has the right materials.
Find out what the right materials are here: Improving Liver Detox may save your life.
Silymarin is a group of flavanoids that come from the seeds of the milk thistle plant. Silymarin is especially good for protecting the liver and enhancing the detoxification of many toxins as well as helping the liver to regenerate itself.
Doctor’s also point out quite rightly that if you are used to drinking drinking on a daily basis you are likely to suffer all sorts of unpleasant side-effects from a sudden withdrawal.
The fact is that by following a good, liver friendly, diet you can help support your liver and body so you avoid or lessen the withdrawal effects. As with any good detox diet plan it’s best not to go cold turkey and cut out a lot of bad foods all at once but spend two weeks gradually replacing the unhealthy foods and drinks with healthy alternatives.
So, to answer the question the January Dryathlon is not enough on its own to detox your liver.
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