Your liver is the largest internal organ and acts as a scavenger for the body. It collects and removes toxins and other waste products from the body. In addition, the liver performs over 500 more vital functions that are too many to mention here.
After all the work the organ does for you, the least can do is take care of it to keep it functioning at its best.
In this article, I will introduce the best liver detox teas that have science-backed benefits for keeping this vital organ functioning properly.
Combine them with a healthy diet and regular exercise and your liver will thank you.
Taking Care of Your Liver is Important
Your liver is a superhero that very often doesn’t get the credit and care it deserves. You have to admit that performing hundreds of different functions is a lot of work for one organ.
Nevertheless, after learning how important the liver is I decided to take it more seriously. The first thing I started doing was drinking herbal detox teas for the liver. I noticed my acne improved, my skin appeared clearer, and my itchy skin went away.
I have suffered from acne since I was a teenager. No amount of acne treatment helped, not knowing it was my liver screaming for some TLC.
How Does the Liver Work
You will realize how busy this organ is on a daily basis when you look at its production, processing, regulating, balancing, conversion, adjusting, and removal functions.
Here are some amazing things your liver does:
- Breaks down (metabolizes) food in the body
- Balances, stores, and makes glucose
- Produces bile, a fluid that aids digestion and removes waste from the body
- Converts excess glucose into glycogen for storage
- Clears away drugs and other toxic substances from the body
- Produces certain proteins for blood plasma
- Makes cholesterol and adjust cholesterol levels
- Regulates blood clotting and hormone levels
- Assists in immunity by removing bacteria from the bloodstream
The liver breaks down harmful substances and excretes their by-products into the bile or blood. Bile by-products leave the body as feces. Blood by-products are removed from the body as urine.
How to Keep Your Liver Healthy
Here are some important steps you can take to promote liver health, and detoxifying the liver is one of them.
- Eat healthily: You can be kind to your liver by eating a lot of fresh fruits, vegetables, and other liver-friendly foods. Also, avoid fatty and fried foods and drink a lot of water to flush toxins out.
- Exercise: Exercising and staying active helps the body release toxins, prevent obesity, and reduce the risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFL) associated with obesity and insulin resistance.
- Avoid alcohol and illegal drugs: Alcohol and street drugs are known causes of liver damage. Alcohol causes cirrhosis of the liver, a chronic liver disease that leads to death.
- Manage medications: Drugs including acetaminophen, antibiotics, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), chemotherapy drugs, iron supplements, and high doses of vitamin A can cause drug-induced liver injury (DILI).
- Detox your liver: In addition to these suggestions, you can remove toxins and impurities from your body by drinking herbal teas that benefit the liver.
Why Liver Detox Is Important
Whether you drink some of the liver detox teas mentioned in this article or opt for other cleansing methods, cleaning your liver can help prevent or improve certain diseases or conditions. They include liver disease, hepatitis A, B, and C, cirrhosis of the liver, alcoholic hepatitis, NAFL, and hemochromatosis.
Signs indicating that a liver cleansing is in order include itchy skin, dull-looking skin, bad body odor, and frequent headaches, gas bloating, or constipation. Other signs are dark urine when hydrated, trouble losing weight, general fatigue, mood swings, and trouble sleeping.
Best Herbal Teas for Liver Detox
Numerous studies confirmed that certain herbs contain powerful detoxifying agents that may benefit the liver and prevent liver damage.
When I was looking for the best liver detoxification teas for my personal use, I came across some interesting studies that pointed me to the following herbs:
1. Milk Thistle
Milk thistle tea has a mild and slightly sweet flavor and a host of health benefits for the liver.
Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) is a plant related to the Asteraceae plant family. It is originally grown in Southern Europe, parts of the Middle East, and Northern Africa. The natives have traditionally used it to treat liver, bile, and gallbladder disorders.
Milk thistle is promoted as a dietary supplement for conditions such as jaundice, hepatitis, and cirrhosis.
Drinking the tea may help ease the symptoms of liver cancer and fatty liver disease.
Silymarin is the herb’s active compound. Because of its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fibrotic effects, it is the most used natural compound for treating liver diseases worldwide.
This herb can also protect liver cells from the toxic effects of drugs, including drugs used in chemotherapy.
The antioxidant activities protect against liver damage from the free radicals produced when alcohol breaks down in the body. Silymarin also helps reduce liver enzyme levels and can protect the T cell in the immune system.
Scientists continue studying silymarin’s as a natural treatment against liver toxicity and chronic liver disease because of its promising healing potentials. Based on the research and my own experience, this might just be the best liver detox tea there is!
You can order high-quality organic milk thistle tea from Buddha Teas Online Store.
Besides spicing up your day, ginger tea can enhance liver health and may help manage nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
This disease is one of the most common chronic liver diseases worldwide and is linked to obesity and insulin resistance in diabetics.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is a plant root and functional spice that is widely used for making tea and for its health benefits.
A study from 2016 suggests that ginger may help in the management of NAFLD. The spice contains antioxidants, gingerols, shogaols, and anti-inflammatory compounds that can improve glucose absorption. By helping to regulate blood sugar, ginger may help improve NAFLD-associated disorders in people who are obese and those with insulin resistance.
The same study looked at the effects of ginger supplements for managing NAFLD. The 44 patients who took part in the clinical trial were given two grams of a ginger supplement per day for 12 weeks. They also followed a specific diet and exercised. At the end of the trial, the researchers found that ginger has beneficial effects on this particular type of liver disease.
Evidence from another study suggests that a combination of milk thistle and ginger can protect the liver against liver fibrosis.
Fibrosis of the liver is a chronic condition linked to fatty liver disease and chronic viral hepatitis.
Steep one teaspoon of freshly grated ginger in a cup of boiling water. Add lemon and honey to taste. Wait for about 5 minutes then drink your ginger tea with its wonderful aroma!
If you want to make things easier, check out my guide with the best ginger tea brands and order some.
Another great liver detox tea is made from dandelion, a common plant that grows in many countries.
I have dandelions with its yellow flowers but didn’t know about the many health effects that it has until lately. I also didn’t know the unassuming plant is good for detoxifying the liver although I drink the tea from time to time.
In fact, the root of dandelion (Taraxacum official) has long been used as a “liver tonic” in folk medicine.
A 2017 study found that the polysaccharides in dandelion have hepatoprotective effects that support liver functions. Dandelion leaf extract was also investigated as a possible alternative treatment for high-fat-diet-induced (HFD-induced) non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
The results showed that the herb greatly suppressed the build-up of fatty acids (lipids) in the liver and reduced insulin resistance.
Based on this finding, dandelion presents a promising way to treat and prevent obesity-related NAFLD.
Many people make dandelion tea by infusing the plant’s leaves or flowers in water or using roasted dandelion roots. Enjoy the earthy grassy, delicate, sweet, or bold smoky flavors depending on if you used the leaves, flowers, or roasted root.
I recommend that you try this milk and smooth tasting Organic Dandelion Root Tea from Buddha Teas.
Did you know that turmeric (Curcuma longa) is also touted as one of the best liver detox herbs?
Turmeric is a mighty herbal spice with a bright yellow active ingredient known as curcumin. For centuries, herbal doctors and naturopaths used turmeric tea for its antioxidants and anti-inflammatory effects on the liver and body in general.
Oxidative stress is a key reason for liver damage from toxin build-up caused by alcohol, viral infections, illegal and pharmaceutical drugs, environmental pollutants, and other agents.
Knowing turmeric’s ability to neutralize toxins, various studies were done to see its effects on liver disease and liver health. For example, a review that assessed the anti-oxidant activities of curcumin on the liver found that it can be effective in various types of oxidative associated liver disorders.
Two important findings are that curcumin acts as a free radical scavenger and has the ability to decrease the severity of NAFLD by reducing the fat content in the liver.
Meanwhile, the findings of a 2013 study suggest that fermented turmeric powder (FTP) has the ability to prevent liver damage as well as improve hepatic function.
If you are planning on buying some turmeric tea, see this guide with the best turmeric powder, tea bags, and herbal tea blends.
5. Phyllanthus Amarus
Phyllanthus amarus (P. amarus) leaves, stems, roots, and whole-plant extracts can be used to brew a tea that can fight toxins in the body.
P. amarus belongs to the family Euphorbiaceae and has multiple species. These plant species are known traditionally for their medicinal properties including their abilities to treat jaundice, liver disease, hepatitis, and prevent liver damage.
Some species also contain antioxidants that show scavenging activities that can help protect the liver.
The Chines and Indian Ayurvedic know this all too well and have used the herb for centuries to address problems of the kidney, liver, and spleen. And they don’t mind the bitter, sweet, or sour taste of Phyllanthus amarus tea.
The wide pharmacological activities of P. amarus includes hepatoprotective, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anticancer, antioxidant, and diuretic. A 2012 study confirms both the hepatoprotective and antioxidant activities of the two species, P. emblica and P. polyphyllus. Researchers arrived at this conclusion after screening extracts from the dried leaves and stems of the two plant types.
Based on the findings of another clinical trial, P. amarus can protect the liver against the damage caused by chemotherapy drugs. It shows the ability to reduce the toxic effects of the drugs after they are broken down by the body.
My Favorite Herbal Detox Tea Recipe
Here is my favorite herbal detox tea recipe that combines several powerful herbs and also tastes delicious!
Ingredients for 2 cups of herbal detox tea:
- 2 cups (5 dl) of water
- 1 tsp ground milk thistle seed
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp dried dandelion root
- 1 tsp dried ginger root
- 1/2 cinnamon stick
Optional ingredients (for taste):
- Fresh lemon juice
Instead of using turmeric powder and dried dandelion and ginger root, you can also use fresh ingredients. If you use fresh roots, grate them, and use 2 teaspoons of each.
Here is how to prepare it:
- Add all the ingredients in a pan and heat until it’s simmering.
- Cover and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let it sit for another 5 minutes.
- Pour into cups through a strainer.
- You can add some honey and fresh lemon juice for taste.
Cleaning the liver with herbal detox teas can prevent or treat certain conditions that damage the liver.
These teas also provide many additional health benefits and according to studies, people who drink them generally reported feeling healthier.
The herbs mentioned here are considered safe and, when taken as recommended, can detoxify the liver and enhance liver functions. Regardless of their positive health benefits, you should talk to your doctor first before using herbal teas for liver detox. This is especially important if you are pregnant or on some type of medication.
In addition to the herbs mentioned here, I recommend that you read this article about ashitaba health benefits, as it is one of the best natural remedies for protecting the liver from oxidative damage.
If you have any questions, please post them below in the comments section. Or share your experience and tell me what you think is the best liver detox tea.
Enjoy your tea and stay healthy!
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