When was the last time you had a blood test for your liver? It is so easy and inexpensive to check your liver function and everyone should do it once a year. Liver problems such as fatty liver and hepatitis B and C infections are very common and if we detect these liver problems early we can treat them effectively. Many people don’t discover they have a liver problem until it is advanced and difficult to treat.

A simple blood test can check for liver damage by measuring the level of liver enzymes in your blood. Another good reason to check your liver regularly is if you are taking prescribed medications on a long term basis. Many medications can damage the liver, such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, antibiotics, pain killers and immunosuppressant drugs. There is a lot of information about liver tests on this page.

One of my patients got a nasty shock when he discovered he had cirrhosis of the liver and liver failure after taking the drug methotrexate for 10 years. He had been prescribed the immunosuppressant drug methotrexate to reduce the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and unfortunately his doctor had checked his liver function only once a year when it should have been checked monthly. Unbeknown to his doctor and him, this drug had been insidiously eating away at his healthy liver cells and turning his liver into a lump of scar tissue. This could have been picked up early with monthly liver function tests. The other sad thing for this 70-year-old professional man was that he had not sought the help of a doctor or naturopath who knew how to treat autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, with nutritional medicine. I have written about this in my book called Healing Autoimmune Disease: A plan to help your immune system and reduce inflammation.

How your liver protects you

Liver cells possess specialized metabolic pathways that turn dangerous toxins and drugs into forms that can be easily excreted from the body via the bile, sweat, and urine. If the liver does not break these toxic substances down, they cannot be removed from your body; thus they build up and increase the rate of aging, as well as your risk of immune problems. The ingredients in Livatone have been selected because they support and improve these detoxification pathways in your liver. If you have a fatty liver, inflamed liver or sluggish liver, it will not be manufacturing sufficient bile, or the bile will be too high in fat and contain insufficient bile acids and bile salts. This means your digestion will suffer. You may experience bloating, gas, or nausea. You will also not be absorbing essential fatty acids or fat soluble vitamins well enough, thus your hair, skin and nails can suffer, and you may have low hormone levels, since your sex hormones are made out of fat. An ox bile supplement can help to correct this. Taking a bile supplement also helps to prevent small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, as bile has a natural antimicrobial effect in the gut.

The mineral selenium is incredibly important for a healthy liver because without selenium the ability of your liver to perform detoxification of your body is severely limited. The reason for this is the antioxidant glutathione cannot function without selenium. The most important antioxidant that your liver manufactures is glutathione and it is high in sulfur. Glutathione protects your liver cells from damage from many things, including toxins and viruses.

The above statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease.