Although most people are aware of the importance of a healthy liver, few know that herbs can be incredibly beneficial for the organ. Herbs have been used for centuries to treat many illnesses, and they can be an incredibly powerful tool for improving liver health.
Why should you concern about the liver health?
The liver is a vital organ in the body. It's responsible for more than 500 vital functions in our body, including filtering and detoxifying our blood, as well as processing nutrients from food and eliminating toxins from the body.
When our liver is not functioning properly, it can lead to a range of symptoms, including a swollen abdomen, nausea, itching, or jaundice. According to the given source, liver failure can even be fatal.
Liver disease is accountable for 2 million fatalities each year globally; 1 million transpire as the outcome of cirrhosis side effects, and the other one million from viral hepatitis and hepatocellular carcinoma.
Fortunately, there are measures we can take to protect our livers. Herbal medicine can be a powerful protective ally to our livers, and 65% of patients in the US and Europe use natural remedies to treat liver diseases. Listed below are some easy-to-find scientifically-proven herbal supplements that can support and protect our livers.
Before consuming any herbal supplements, including those you find on this list, you must consult a medical professional if you have a pre-existing liver condition. Although some herbs can benefit your health and provide additional nutrients, it is essential to remember that certain herbs may pose risks for people with specific liver concerns.
Therefore, talking to your healthcare provider before making any changes to your diet or supplement routine is essential to avoid potential harm from adding an herb that could affect one's liver adversely.
Milk thistle (silymarin)
Milk thistle, known as Silymarin, is a popular supplement used to help support liver health. It is derived from the seeds of the milk thistle plant Silybum marianum and contains compounds such as silybin, silychristin and silydianin.
Milk Thistle may indeed have liver-protective properties due to its antioxidant effects. These effects could reduce inflammation, protect against liver disease progression, and even enhance overall organ function.
According to the above research, several studies have shown that taking a Milk Thistle supplement can prolong life in those with alcoholic cirrhosis, for example. Other potential benefits of this supplement include reducing the risk of developing nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and other forms of chronic liver damage or problems such as hepatitis C virus infection or liver fibrosis caused by alcohol abuse.
How to add milk thistle to your diet
There are several ways you can add Milk Thistle into your diet for better liver health.
One option is to take a daily supplement containing Silymarin extract, which is typically available in capsule form at most herb stores and online. Check out;
- Nutricost Milk Thistle 250mg Capsules
- Jarrow Formulas Milk Thistle 150 mg Capsules.
If you prefer to get it through food sources, you can incorporate milk thistle leaves and flowers as a vegetable for salads and a substitute for spinach.
Combining centuries of wisdom and healing, Ginseng is one of the most revered herbs in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). A quick glance at Wikipedia's List of traditional Chinese medicines confirms its importance. Ginseng is a powerful herb with impressive anti-inflammatory properties, making it an ideal supplement for liver health.
Numerous NIH test-tube and animal studies have presented evidence that Ginseng, as well as its associated ginsenosides, may offer various benefits. These include immunologic protection, antineoplastic activities with neuroprotective and hepatoprotective capabilities, antidiabetic, antistress, anti-inflammatory, antihyperlipidemic, and antioxidative properties.
Ginseng treatment may help improve liver function and reduce inflammation in people with chronic liver disease, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, alcoholic liver disease, chronic viral hepatitis b virus, and chronic viral hepatitis c virus.
How to add ginseng to your diet
In terms of dietary intake, take between 1-2 grams of dried ginseng root per day.
Ginseng tea is the most popular way to incorporate Ginseng into your diet and is easy to make by steeping 1grams of dried ginseng root in 8 ounces of hot water for 5-10 minutes.
You can also purchase bottled ginseng tea in many grocery stores and health food stores online, or here;
- Planet Organic Siberian Ginseng Root Loose Herbal Tea
- Hyleys Natural Wellness Ginseng with Green Tea
You can also take ginseng in capsule form, like Authentic Korean Red Panax Ginseng + Ginkgo Biloba, 120 Vegan Capsules.
People can also try adding powdered ginseng root to smoothies or other food preparations. If using fresh ginseng root, it is best to steam or boil it for the most benefits.
We recommend Red Panax Ginseng 1-16oz Korean Red Ginseng 6 Year Old Whole Roots, Red Ginseng Root, & Red Ginseng Korea.
Please Note ~
Green tea is becoming increasingly popular for its range of health benefits, and one of the most significant is its potential to improve liver health. Green tea helps protect against a number of liver diseases, including hepatitis, fatty liver disease, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), cirrhosis, and chronic disease.
Regular green tea drinking is associated with decreased risk of developing these conditions.
However, there is some grain of salt to be taken with these findings. Although green tea is purported to be beneficial for the liver in some cases, there have been a few isolated occurrences where taking concentrated green tea extract supplements has caused acute damage to the liver.
How to add green tea to your diet
To take advantage of the benefits of green tea, incorporating green tea into your diet is key.
One easy way is to switch from coffee or other caffeinated beverages to matcha or green tea instead – adding honey or lemon if desired for flavor. Here is The Top Rated Green Thai Tea for your reference.
Another option would be to incorporate brewed or cold-brewed green tea into smoothies, juices, or teas for an added dose of nutrition. Matcha powder can also be added to desserts like ice cream, puddings, and cake batters for a flavorful treat with plenty of health benefits.
- Bigelow Green Tea 6 Flavor Variety Pack, Caffeinated
- Pure Leaf Iced Tea, Unsweetened Green Tea
- MATCHA DNA Certified Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder
For those looking for a more concentrated source of nutrients without having to drink multiple cups a day, there are also various supplements available containing green tea extract in pill form.
- NOW Supplements, Green Tea Extract 400 mg with Vitamin C, Cellular Protection*, 250 Veg Capsules
- Jarrow Formulas Green Tea 500 mg Capsules
Garlic is a popular addition to many herbal remedies and is known for its potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory plant compounds. Below studies have shown that garlic may support healthy liver function and reduce the severity of liver fat accumulation in Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease Patients.
An astonishing 51% of participants in the garlic group experienced a decrease in liver fat accumulation severity, compared to only 16% from the control group.
Additionally, raw garlic consumption to a lowers the risk of liver cancer. Research has revealed that consuming raw garlic on two or more occasions each week can decrease the chances of developing liver cancer by up to 23%, compared with those who consume it less than twice per week.
Although raw garlic is generally considered safe and beneficial for liver health, concentrated garlic supplements may induce liver injury in some people. Therefore, it's best to get your necessary dose of garlic from dietary sources whenever possible.
How to add garlic to your diet
Some great ways to incorporate more garlic into your diet include adding it to savory dishes like sauces or soups or pairing it with fresh herbs like parsley or rosemary when roasting vegetables or meats. You can also try crushing fresh cloves and adding them to salad dressings for added flavor and nutrition.
To reap maximum benefits for your liver health from incorporating garlic into your diet, you should aim not just for any old serving but look specifically for whole cloves of organic raw garlic as they are higher in allicin.
- Iberia Minced Garlic In Water
- 2 Pound Fresh Garlic USA California Heirloom Gilroy Fines
Ginger is a popular herb that has many uses, including the potential to enhance liver health. Consuming ginger powder can help to reduce liver enzymes and other markers of inflammation, as well as reduce fat buildup in the liver. This makes it an excellent choice for those looking for natural ways to support their liver health.
How to add ginger to your diet
When it comes to adding ginger to your diet, there are several different options available.
One of the most popular ways is to consume ginger powder in a capsule, tablet, or tincture form. Check out The Highest Ranking Organic Ginger Capsules.
Alternatively, you could try adding freshly grated or minced ginger root into smoothies and sauces for added flavor and nutrition.
- Ginger Root 1/4 inch Organic Cut & Sifted
- 365 by Whole Foods Market, Ginger Ground Organic
You could also make your own tea by simmering fresh slices of ginger root in hot water for 5-10 minutes before drinking - you can do this daily if desired. Check out The Best Organic Ginger Tea for our recommended ginger tea products.
A popular relative of ginger, turmeric has been used in ayurvedic and Chinese medicine for centuries as a natural anti-inflammatory. Turmeric is renowned for its potent antioxidant curcumin, which has been connected to a plethora of health benefits such as boosted digestion, reduced inflammation, and strengthened immunity.
Daily consumption of 500 mg of curcumin for eight weeks significantly decreased liver fat content and AST/ALT levels. The outcomes were compared to those obtained from a placebo group.
Although supplementing with turmeric and curcumin is generally considered to be safe, there have been reports of acute liver injury in some cases. The cause for these cases is unknown, however, as it's unclear if they were caused by the turmeric or curcumin themselves or possible contamination. Nevertheless, those who have existing liver problems should exercise caution when considering taking curcumin or turmeric supplements.
How to take turmeric root and curcumin
For general health, many people prefer to use turmeric in their cooking and as a spice. However, it is not known to be as effective in delivering health benefits as taking it in a supplement form.
- MB Herbals Wild Turmeric Powder 100g
When taken as a supplement, turmeric root and curcumin should be taken with meals. This is to ensure that it gets absorbed into the body correctly. Healthline recommends taking turmeric with black pepper, as this helps to increase the absorption of curcumin.
- Nature Made Turmeric Curcumin 500 mg, Herbal Supplement
- 4-in-1 Turmeric Curcumin w Bioperine 2360mg (120 ct) | 95% Curcuminoids, Ginger Root, Garlic Pills, Black Pepper
Final words - other medicinal herbs for liver health worth mentioning
In addition to the above-mentioned herbal medicine, there are a few other medicinal herbs that can help promote liver health.
- Schizandra Berry
- Reishi Mushroom
- Cordyceps Mushroom
- Dandelion Root
- Red Clover
- Ginkgo biloba
These herbal medicines have been used for centuries to help treat various ailments, including those related to the liver. Each herb has its own set of benefits and drawbacks, scientifically proven, and yet should be discussed with a medical professional before taking it. Additionally, it is important to monitor any potential side effects, and you should always take herbs as directed.
What Teas Heal The Liver?
Certain teas have been used to help promote liver health. These include dandelion root tea, ginger tea, milk thistle tea, and turmeric tea. All of these teas have been used to help reduce inflammation in the liver and aid in detoxification.
How Can I Naturally Strengthen My Liver?
In addition to drinking the teas mentioned above, there are other natural ways to help promote liver health. Eating a balanced diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables, and avoiding processed foods, can help to reduce the stress on the liver. Regular exercise is also beneficial for overall health and can help to reduce fat buildup in the liver. Drinking plenty of water and reducing alcohol intake can also help to protect the liver from damage. Additionally, supplementation with vitamins, herbs, and minerals can help support healthy liver function.