The 5 worst things you can do to your liver
The liver is a vital organ, and it’s important to take care of it. It is responsible for many important functions in the body, including metabolism of proteins and other substances. It also helps regulate blood clotting, nutrient levels, and water balance. If you are not taking good care of your liver, you could be putting yourself at risk for developing serious health problems down the line. This article will discuss 5 things that can damage your liver over time if you don’t stop doing them!
1. Drinking too much alcohol
Alcohol is one of the worst things you can do to your liver. It can cause inflammation and scarring, which can lead to liver cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is a condition in which the liver becomes severely damaged and is unable to function properly. In severe cases, it can even lead to death.
If you are drinking alcohol, make sure to drink in moderation. That means no more than one drink per day for women and no more than two drinks per day for men.
If you are struggling with alcohol addiction, seek help from a professional therapist or counsellor. There is support available for you if you want to quit drinking.
2. Eating foods that are high in fat and cholesterol
A diet high in fat and cholesterol can damage the liver over time. The fatty acids contained in these foods can cause inflammation and scarring of the liver, leading to cirrhosis.
If you are eating a high-fat diet, try to cut back on unhealthy fats and replace them with healthy unsaturated fats instead. Switch out processed meats for lean protein sources, and choose whole grain breads and cereals over refined carbs.
It’s also important to keep your cholesterol levels in check. Cholesterol is a waxy substance found in the blood. It is necessary for health, but too much of it can be harmful. Cholesterol levels can be measured with a simple blood test. If your cholesterol level is high, you may need to make some changes to your diet.
To get your cholesterol levels tested, you can opt for any of our health checks, as they all include a cholesterol test.
3. Consuming medications or supplements without consulting a doctor first
Many medications and supplements can damage the liver if taken in high doses or for a long period of time. Some common culprits include acetaminophen, ibuprofen, aspirin, and vitamins A and D.
If you are taking any medications or supplements, make sure to talk to your doctor first. He or she will be able to tell you which ones are safe for you to take and in what doses.
It’s also important to be aware of the potential side effects of any medications or supplements you are taking. If you experience any adverse effects, stop taking the medication or supplement and talk to your doctor.
4. Smoking cigarettes or using other tobacco products
Tobacco use is one of the leading causes of liver cancer. However, many people still smoke or consume tobacco products such as cigars and chewing tobacco (these are ok to help you stop smoking but shouldn’t be consumed in the long-term).
If you are currently using any form of tobacco, it’s time to quit. Tobacco use is not only bad for your liver, but it’s also bad for your lungs and heart. It can also increase your risk of developing other types of cancer.
Related: Simple tips to stop smoking
5. Being overly stressed
Being stressed can cause a lot of health problems, and liver damage is one of them. Stress causes the body to release harmful hormones such as cortisol (also known as the “stress hormone”) and adrenaline into your system. This puts added stress on an already overworked organ and inhibits its ability to function properly. Additional, in times of stress, natural killer cells (NKC) are produced and can damage the liver.
If you are feeling stressed, try to find ways to relax and de-stress. Some relaxation techniques include yoga, meditation, deep breathing exercises, and aromatherapy. You can also try listening to calming music or reading a book.
If you are struggling with chronic stress, it’s important to talk to a doctor or therapist. There is help available for you if you want to manage your stress levels better.