Liver Essentials

Liver Essentials

The liver is the essential organ of the human body that performs a lot of functions to keep you healthy. The primary function of the liver is that it converts nutrients into chemicals according to the needs of the human body. It detoxifies all the harmful materials and poisons. It converts the food that you eat into energy. So, if your liver is not operating well, then you will not be healthy, and it will affect your complete body.

The major diseases of the liver are:

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatitis C
  • Autoimmune Hepatitis
  • Liver Cancer

Herbs for the Treatment of Liver Diseases

Chronic Liver diseases are spreading worldwide, and the liver cirrhosis is the 9th major cause of death in Western countries nowadays. So, keeping this thing in mind, the use of medicinal herbs by liver patients is not surprising. Some of the prominent examples of medicinal herbs used to treat liver diseases are described below.

1. Milk Thistle

A perennial herb, Milk thistle (Silybum marianum), having medicinal properties. It consists of seeds, having silymarin, which has the properties of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Milk thistle is used to treat liver problems, used to “detoxify” the liver.
Some studies also indicate that silymarin may prevent toxic substances from binding to liver cells, thus repairing liver function. But, some studies on Milk Thistle’s therapeutic uses show mixed results relating to liver diseases.
Milk thistle is also used by Chronic hepatitis C patients too (viral infection caused by progressive scarring of the liver). A study showed by the National Institute of Health says that 23 percent of 1145 people with hepatitis C use herbal supplements, with milk thistle being used the most.

2. Barberry

Barberry (Berberis vulgaris) is a native bush to Asia, Middle East, Europe, and North Africa that’s naturalized to North American regions. Berries of Barberry are used to make jellies and jams. Still, it is also used in history as an herbal remedy for digestive issues, like diarrhea, constipation, dyspepsia, heartburn, and loss of appetite. It is also used in liver and gallbladder issues because it is thought to increase bile flow. It can also be used topically to treat skin conditions like psoriasis, acne and eczema, even minor wounds.

Its use in liver diseases has been researched for years. A study in 2015 indicates that the liver gets rid of its harmful toxins by enhancing its liver enzymes caused due to berberine. Berberine helps the removal of toxic chemicals from food, by alleviating bile secretion. Barberry and berberine have also shown the potential for cancer treatment in a study in 2015.

3. Oregon grape root

Belonging to the family of Berberidaceae, Oregon grape (Mahonia aquifolium or Berberis aquifolium) is a medicinal herb. Oregon grape was used by indigenous tribes for fever, arthritis, jaundice, diarrhea, and other diseases, before Europeans and other immigrants moved to America

Herbalists use Oregon grape due to its function to improve the liver, improve bile flow, and blood cleansing. Oregon grape root therapeutic uses include treating infections of the stomach and intestines and liver congestion. It also acts as an antimicrobial. It also serves as a hepatic or herb for the liver. Bitter tasting herbs were said to be useful for liver and gallbladder in western herbalism. The tongue tastes the bitterness of the herb, thus stimulating the digestive functions and digestive enzymatic secretions. The bitter taste also stimulates the secretion of bile from the gallbladder and liver, contributing to digestion and digesting fats.

4. Yellow Dock

It is a national plant of Asia and Europe which is also known as “curled dock” or “Rumex Crispus”, grown as a common weed in North America and as a vegetable in Europe. Harvested in spring and tastes somewhat sour but still used in dishes and salads. Although its leaves are used as a mild laxative, its most used parts are bitter roots.

Yellow dock is a useful herb used for detoxifying and cleansing the body of toxins. Research shows that it activates the lymphatic system in the body, flushing out the harmful and toxic materials. It is also used as a constituent for cleansing the blood in formulas like Essiac Tea. It also acts as a diuretic, to improve the toxin removal, urination frequency is increased. It increases water and mucous secretion in the colon, improves peristalsis, and thus helps to increase the removal of waste from the body.

Conclusion:

Clinical researches analyze the efficacy of medicinal herbs for the treatment of liver diseases. More efforts in the future should implement the extensive mythological improvements to distinguish between real therapeutic and unfounded hopes.

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