The second largest organ in the body, your liver filters toxins from your blood and processes the foods you eat into energy and nutrients. More than 30 million Americans suffer from some form of liver disease, a shocking statistic that makes it more important than ever to lead a healthy lifestyle. October is Liver Awareness Month, making it the perfect time to learn more about this organ and how you can fight liver disease on a day-to-day basis.
Maintain a Healthy Weigh
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or NAFLD, has become more common as obesity rates across the country grow. Maintain a healthy liver and reduce liver fat by exercising regularly and eating a healthy, balanced diet. Drink plenty of water and make sure to get enough fiber, meat and dairy in your diet. Pay attention to your caloric intake, avoiding high calorie meals, refined carbohydrates and sugars.
Found in household cleaners, insecticides and chemicals, toxins cause damage to the liver. Limit your contact with these products and be sure to wear a mask when using aerosol. There are many toxins in cigarettes as well, and quitting smoking will help your liver, lungs, heart and more.
Drink Alcohol Responsibly
One of the most common causes of liver damage, alcohol can destroy liver cells and create scars across the organ. There are a few alcohol-related liver diseases, including alcoholic cirrhosis and alcoholic fatty liver disease. Talk to your doctor with concerns and learn more about alcohol and the liver with the American Liver Foundation.
Remember Proper Hygiene
Remember to practice good hygiene, washing your hands before preparing food and eating dinner, as well as after using the bathroom. Avoid the sharing of items like nail clippers and razors as well.
Follow Directions on Medications
As we age, the number of medications we take usually increases, putting us at risk for liver damage. The liver is responsible for processing all substances that go through the body and it is important to manage your medication correctly to avoid unnecessary stress to it. Talk to your doctor and follow your dosing instructions to be sure you are taking your medication properly.
For individuals in New Castle County, Delaware who are having trouble managing their medications or looking for help while they are at home, contact Your Own Home Senior Care at 302-478-7081 to learn more about what we can do for you.
Further educate yourself about Liver Awareness Month with the American Liver Foundation and have a happy October!