Fatty Liver - What to Avoid
Rivers from Connecticut asks: My husband (age 64) and I (age 65) both have non-alcoholic fatty liver. What do you recommend for this condition?
First, let's define non-alcoholic fatty liver. It is a benign-sounding name for liver cirrhosis. The non-alcoholic part of the name means it probably didn't come from drinking alcohol.
Cirrhosis means your liver is turning into scar tissue. Instead of gushy, functional tissue, more and more of the liver becomes hard, brittle and pretty much useless.
When toxins from food, the environment, etc. get into our bodies, we depend on the liver to filter them out and send them on their way in our stool.
As scar tissue takes over more and more of the liver, it can filter less and less. This way lies disease, even death.
Epidemic: fatty liver
Fatty liver is epidemic nowadays, and medicine has no answer.
Fortunately, that doesn't mean there is no answer, just that you have to know where to look for it.
The answer comes in two parts. First, you avoid toxins that beat up on it. Second, you pile on good nutritional support. Can you recover from fatty liver? Absolutely.
How it interacts with other organs and how to use nutrition to bring everything back from the brink is a huge topic which I cover in the Moving to Health program. It's not a one-quick-article-and-you-know-all-you-need-to-know kind of thing.
But I can really cut to the chase about avoiding the toxins that overwhelm the liver. And since avoiding toxins is at least half the battle, you'll be able to start fighting back.
Toxins to avoid
Three toxins to avoid if you love your liver
• High fructose corn syrup scars up the liver big time. It storms in, grabs our minerals, jumps up and down on the liver and creates general chaos. For example, just two cans of HFCS soda a week double your chances of pancreatic cancer because your liver can't process that much stripped-down fructose. Sugar isn't anywhere close to a health food, but it looks like Mother Teresa compared to devil HFCS.
And HFCS is everywhere. You don't even have to read the ingredients in processed foods; HFCS is always there. And in candy, of course. Salad dressings. Cereals. Even worcestershire sauce, and that's pretty bitter.
Fructose in any form creates problems for the liver-even the natural fructose in fruit. It comes with other nutritional components to soften the razor-sharp edge of HFCS, but it's still hard on it. Anybody with fatty liver should swear off fruit until the scarring goes away.
• Fluoride whacks the liver like you can't believe-and the kidneys, small intestine, endocrine system, pancreas, gall bladder, and on, and on and on. And, loud claims aside, fluoride doesn't do anything good for anybody. Nothing. Zip. Zero. Nada.
Do not drink fluoridated water, take a bath in fluoridated water, swim in fluoridated water, etc. You can't mix it up with fluoride if you want to be healthy.
And don't forget that your orange juice might have been reconstituted with fluoridated water. Some antibiotics and anti-depressants come chock-a-block full of fluoride, too. Toothpaste and mouthwash, also. And what about fruits and vegetables sprayed with fluoride-based pesticides? Grapes get sprayed heavily with fluoride, which then ends up in grape juice and wine-as well as the grapes you buy at the grocery store.
You'll have to be a detective to find all the places fluoride lurks, but your liver will thank you.
• And then there's estrogen. Whoa, Momma, that's some tough stuff! And it can be tough on your liver, too, because we get way more than we can use.
The liver plays a big role in taming estrogen, especially the bogus estrogen that lies in wait pretty much everywhere we look. But when estrogen hits like a tsunami, it swamps the this organ.
Plastics with a 1, 3 or 6 recycle code (in the triangle on/near the bottom) are estrogen-in-motion. One estrogen-laden plastic, phthalate (THAL ate) is in the coating of some pills, especially the "delayed release" ones. And it's in medical tubing that takes blood, gives blood and does dialysis. When you see flexible plastic tubes (or pacifiers, for that matter), think estrogen.
And most of the cans we get in the grocery store are lined with synthetic estrogen (BPA) which leeches into the food. When they created BPA back around the 1930s, it was intended to ease the symptoms of menopause, but it bumped off too many women, so they put it in cans instead. Now, that doesn't make sense, but it sure makes money.
Birth control pills
Birth control pills can take out a liver or endocrine system in a jiffy. Even if we don't take them. Our water supply is loaded with estrogen from the urine of birth control pill poppers.
The meat from factory farms-the stuff you buy at the grocery store-is shot up with hormones, too. And the milk is even worse. Along with estrogen, milk contains pus-and they're finding out that pasteurizing milk doesn't kill viruses in the pus. Got milk?
Organic milk is better than regular grocery-store milk. Raw milk is primo.
And then there's our old friend soy, also known as estrogen-in-spades, leading to breast and prostate cancer. And estrogen is only one of the negative traits of soy. Avoid soy.
To sum up: Give your liver a boost by avoiding high fructose corn syrup, fluoride in any form and estrogen. Unfortunately, all three are just about everywhere, so it'll take some doing. Sigh.
God is good,
Copyright by Bette Dowdell. All rights reserved
P.S. Bette Dowdell is not a doctor, nor does she purport to be She's a patient who's been studying and successfully handling her own endocrine problems for more than 30 years. She offers introductory teleseminars and an in-depth 12-month subscription program, "Moving to Health" about living well with endocrine issues. She explains how things work-or don't, discusses what things to avoid as well as the things that help, and she provides a lot of well-researched nutritional information. Subscribe to her free e-zine at Information is power.