One of the most severe side effects of alcohol abuse is liver damage. The liver is responsible for metabolizing alcohol, which is why it’s particularly vulnerable to alcohol-related issues. Some of the most common liver diseases that can form from excess drinking are alcoholic hepatitis, cirrhosis and fatty liver disease.
Not all liver problems are treatable, but the liver is capable of healing itself. The sooner you stop drinking, the sooner you can reverse the effects of alcohol on your liver. Below we share some of the most important steps you can take to improve liver health.
Eat a Healthy Diet
A poor diet can lead to malnutrition, which complicates liver conditions. This happens because the liver helps the body use nutrients from the food and drinks you consume. If the right nutrients aren’t there, the body’s processes are disrupted.
The best foods to avoid are salty foods, processed meats and sugary foods and beverages. The foods you should eat are:
- Brussel sprouts
- Fatty fish
- Olive oil
Exercise Most Days of the Week
Regular exercise reduces the risk for cardiovascular problems and some cancers. It may also lower the risk for type 2 diabetes, metabolic problems and liver problems. Plus, getting enough exercise prevents you from being overweight, another main cause of fatty liver disease.
If you don't exercise, remember that everything counts! Start a light routine that you can stick to, such as walking, swimming or bike riding. If you need more structure and support, consider working with a personal trainer or taking a class.
Watch the Medicines You Take
As you recover from liver disease, it’s a smart idea to talk to your doctor about the medications you take. It’s possible that you can remove certain medications from your list or decrease their dosage. Even some over-the-counter medications can be bad for the liver. The more medications you are on, the harder your liver has to work.
Avoid Unnecessary Toxins
The fewer toxins that enter your body, the better for your liver. Avoid toxins from spray paints, aerosol cans, insecticides, fungicides and more. If you work in an environment where these types of products are used, wear a mask and gloves to protect yourself.
If you smoke, quit smoking. We know this can be difficult when you’re recovering from substance abuse, but it’s something to keep in mind as you grow stronger in your recovery. The toxins in cigarette smoke will speed up the decaying process, so stay away from secondhand smoke as well.
The liver constantly regenerates itself, so you have this on your side. In fact, it’s the body’s only regenerative organ. By getting help from an outpatient drug rehab in Agoura and following a liver-healthy lifestyle, you may be able to repair most or all of the damage.
To start your journey to sobriety, contact Awakenings Treatment Center today!