The liver is an organ that is part of the digestive system and sits right under the ribcage on the right side of your abdomen. Not many people realise the importance of the liver. In fact, the liver carries out multiple vital processes in the body each day. For example, it produces bile which aids the small intestine in breaking down and absorbing fats, cholesterol, as well as some vitamins. It also plays a pivotal role in filtering the blood in the body by breaking down compounds like estrogen and alcohol in the body.
With the liver’s many roles being crucial for the body’s wellbeing, it is critical that the liver is taken care of, especially for those who have liver disease. The current COVID-19 pandemic has, without a doubt, made it harder for those with liver diseases. However, this guide will introduce you to 3 tips on taking care of your liver so as to manage common issues like stomach pain or vomiting.
Reduce your alcohol intake
With the COVID-19 pandemic taking the world by storm, almost everyone, no matter their industry, is affected. More people are trying to adapt to the sudden switch of working from home. This has led to an increase in people turning to bad habits like smoking or drinking alcohol excessively.
Although it is acceptable to consume alcohol moderately, excessive consumption can be detrimental to the body. As the body metabolises alcohol, it converts alcohol into acetaldehyde, which is toxic. Normally, acetaldehyde will be further converted into acetate, and then water and carbon dioxide, for disposal by the body. However, overconsumption can slow down the metabolisation process, leading to an accumulation of toxic acetaldehyde in the body. This compound is responsible for much of alcohol’s negative impacts on the body. It can damage the liver and other nearby organs by causing inflammation and scarring.
One of the by-products of alcohol in the body are fat compounds, which can lead to a build-up of fatty deposits in your liver, inflammation, as well as a higher chance of liver cancer. Hence, it is best to limit alcohol consumption. One suggestion would be to replace that habit with a healthier activity like reading or even baking.
Don’t fall for fad diets
With more people staying home and not being able to visit the gym conveniently, staying in shape has been one of the main concerns for many. This has led to many looking up easier alternatives for staying in shape and falling for appealing fad diets. A fad diet is essentially a weight-loss plan or strategy that promises dramatic results. Fad diets typically come and go like trends, and the COVID-19 pandemic has seen the surge of fad diets like the fully liquid diet which is said to help in weight-loss.
However, such fad diet methods that cause your weight to fluctuate rapidly in short periods can put excessive stress on your liver. Most people enter into fad diets because of the promised dramatic results with little to no effort. However, the damage that it can cause your liver is often more harmful than beneficial. Instead of taking the easy way out with these diets, a healthier and more long-term alternative would be to implement healthy diets gradually and supplement it with regular exercise.
Commit to a balanced diet
One of the most common reasons for fatty liver disease is obesity. People who are above the optimal or healthy BMI range are at higher risk of other liver diseases or further affecting their current liver condition.
Therefore, you should aim to keep between the BMI range of 18.5 and 22.9. This can be achieved over time through regular exercise sessions and a healthy diet.
Although the COVID pandemic has caused an inconvenience for many, it should not stop you from taking care of vital organs like your liver. Especially during a time like this, it should be essential to visit your doctor for check-ups regularly as well apply the tips above in your daily activities.