Spring liver cleansing is a part of restoring vitality in medical practices all around the world. Cultures in South America, Egypt, and China incorporate liver detoxification into their traditions. Why is this so? To answer this question let’s peruse a list of liver functions:
- Filtering all of the body’s blood 20 times a day
- Chemical, hormone, digestive enzyme, and bile manufacturing
- Breaking down fats
- Converting glucose to glycogen
- Converting amino acids in the blood to urea and sending it on to the kidneys
- Vitamin storage
This list is impressive, but not exhaustive. Consider this liver fact: Even if 75% of the liver is cut away, it can completely regenerate! All these details seem to paint a portrait of the liver as a wonder organ. However, the liver’s unbelievable resilience is a sign of its importance.
“The General” in Classical Chinese Medical
Spring is ruled by the Wood Element. The Wood Element symbolizes our bodies’ need to be flexible, yet strong, like wood. The spring season is the time to focus on liver health, as we prepare to emerge from months of semi-hibernation and move into an active time of the year.
The liver and gallbladder are associated with the Wood Element in CCM. The liver is described as “The General” in Classical Chinese Medicine (CCM), because of all it does and oversees. A clean liver is advantageous for healthy regulation of your vital life force (qi) and blood as they flow through your body. The Western medical model of the liver sees it as both chemical factory and filter. This view is not in conflict with the CCM approach, and one may supplement the other.
Is Your Liver in Need of Some TLC?
Whether you’re feeling well or exhibiting some of the signs in the questionnaire below, a spring liver cleanse is a brilliant way to support optimal health!
– – Do you have any of the following:
- Less than one bowl movement per day, mucus in or on your stool, loose stools or diarrhea, narrow stools, stinky stool, excessive gas, abdominal bloating, heartburn/indigestion/reflux, recurring nausea, abdominal pain or cramping, undigested food in your stools?
– – Have you been experiencing ongoing stress, PMS, allergies, and/or poor digestion?
– – Do you feel indecisive or stuck?
– – Are you affected by hormonal imbalance?
– – Is your level of anger in excess in its expression or repression?
– – Have you engaged in the use of drugs and/or alcohol?
– – Do you feel emotionally frustrated, resentful, or irritable?
– – Is your immunity weak?
– – Are you afflicted by tension headaches and migraines?
Most of us will check one or several of these indicators as we review the list. Especially after a winter season spent consuming fatty foods to warm our bodies and celebrating the holidays with heavy eating and drinking. Physiological, psychological, and spiritual function is hampered by bogged down liver.
There are many ways to approach cleansing the liver. Avenues include temporary dietary shifts, drinking herbal teas or tinctures, acupuncture, and the application, bathing, or breathing in of essential oils.
The recommended duration for people trying a liver cleanse for the first time is three days. Experienced liver cleansers may continue for up to two to three weeks. The ideal time to start is just before the first day of spring, March 20th. So, if you’re planning to cleanse for four days that means you should begin on March 16th.
Diet is essential for a deep liver cleanse. If you are an experienced liver cleanser, you may be able to withstand an exclusive juice fast. However, first and second timers can support health by maintaining a diet of the following foods:
- Organic juices from fruits and vegetables
- Artichokes, chicory root, beets, and carrots
- Wild greens like dandelion leaves, mustard greens, and kale
- Herbs to break up stagnant qi – bulpleurum, cyperus, fennel
- Spices suited to liver cleansing like turmeric, garlic, ginger, saffron, and rosemary
- Fresh parsley, lemon, bitter melon
- Mugwort, wahoo, and fringetree to trigger the secretion of bile from the gallbladder
- Brussel sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and other cruciferous veggies
- Detoxifying herbs including burdock, stinging nettle, and milk thistle
- Gentian, centaury, angelica, orange peel, and yarrow to increase flow and secretion of liver enzymes
- Deep cleaners – Yellow dock, blue flag, Oregon grape
Foods to Avoid while Cleaning
- Fast foods
- Junk foods
- Processed foods
Cleansing oils may be incorporated into massage oils, a bath, or one or two drops may be diluted in teas.
- Anise, basil, bergamot, cardamom, fennel, juniper, lemon verbena, majoram, black pepper, peppermint, and/or rose oil.
Many teas for liver cleansing are available pre-packaged at health food stores. Creating your own blend can be both fun and spiritually fulfilling, adding an additional benefit to your program. You find various combinations of the following ingredients in stores or create your own blend. I’ll share a recommended tea recipe below.
- 2 tablespoons of Stinging Nettle Leaves
- 2 tablespoons of Dandelion Leaves
- 1 tablespoon of Spearmint
- 1 tablespoon of Burdock Root
First, add all the ingredients to a bowl and mix gently. Store the mixture in an air-tight container away from sunlight. When you’re ready to drink, steep a tablespoon an a half of the tea in one cup of boiling water. Enjoy 3-4 times daily during your cleanse for best results!
Results: What to Expect
A good liver cleanse can bring about various response ranging from physical to spiritual instantiations. Most people will notice physical changes such as increased energy, weight loss, or the spontaneous healing of an ailment. Others will obtain a sense of clarity and stress relief. Still others will fell renewed in their spiritual passions and visions.
Before beginning any health regimen, it is wise to consult your physician or ND to consult on how certain avenues for cleansing may benefit your unique system over another. Please, contact Integrative Med Solutions with your questions on liver cleansing by phone, email, or by responding to this post.