Your liver is a key organ in your body’s digestive system. It filters harmful chemicals from your blood, creates bile to break down the fat in your food, and stores glucose to give you a quick energy boost when you need it. Taking care of your liver can help it to function efficiently and protect your health. It can be easily damaged by drug and alcohol use, however, but there are ways you can help your liver heal and improve its functioning.
Avoid Drugs and Alcohol
Your liver filters chemicals from your bloodstream, including drugs, over-the-counter and prescription medications, and alcohol. These can damage liver cells, which can cause scarring and inflammation, known as liver cirrhosis. Some cholesterol medications can cause liver problems, and the painkiller acetaminophen, or Tylenol, can also damage your liver if you take too much. Acetaminophen is an ingredient in hundreds of medications, including cold medications and prescription pain medications, so it is easy to take more than you realize. Other medications may be harmful when combined with alcohol or other drugs. Your doctor or pharmacist can help you determine which of your medications may cause liver damage.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Feeding yourself nourishing food is one of the simplest ways to improve your body’s functioning. A licensed dietician or your physician can help you develop a plan and teach you about healthy diets. Look for recipes with a variety of vegetables, healthy fats, and reduced amounts of sugar and carbohydrates. A healthy diet can help you manage your weight and prevent nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
Regular exercise can increase your overall health, including your liver’s functioning. Aim for 20 minutes each day of continuous activity, such as a walk, a run, a sport, or another exercise. In addition to boosting your cardiovascular system’s strength, exercise can encourage your body to burn stores of fat and reduce your chances of NAFLD.
Reduce Exposure to Toxins
Environmental toxins, such as mold, smoke, and lead can cause serious liver damage, but many household products also can affect your liver. Reduce your exposure to household cleaners, insecticides, and aerosol products by wearing protective gloves and a respirator mask when using them, and wash any exposed skin thoroughly after their use. Cigarettes also can contain additives that can damage your liver, so it may be in your best interest to avoid smoking.
At Turning Point, Inc., we are committed to helping our patients cope with drug and alcohol addictions, and we strive to give them the tools to manage the challenges of their daily lives. Our New Jersey addiction treatment facility features caring staff and a supportive treatment environment. Learn how we can help you or your loved one today.
Contact our facility to start the road to recovery. Call (973) 380-0905.