The liver is the grand central station for your entire digestive system. Every day it converts toxins into waste products, cleanses your blood, metabolizes nutrients and medications, and produces proteins naturally. Because the liver is naturally a detox center, it can clean itself. However, when we don’t do our part it gets overworked, stressed out, and fatty.
What is Fatty Liver Disease?
Every liver uses fat to get the job done, and typically this simple liver fat doesn’t cause any complications in the body. Fatty liver disease is a buildup in your liver and causes big problems. There are two main types of fatty liver disease:
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease: This is inflammation and liver cell damage that is not due to alcohol use. If left unattended, this can lead to fibrosis or scarring.
- Alcoholic fatty liver disease: As your liver breaks down alcohol, it generates harmful substances that damage liver cells. The more alcohol you drink the more damage it causes. If not taken care of, this leads to alcoholic hepatitis and cirrhosis.
The uncleaned filter is fragile. However, because it has no pain receptors, it is hard to identify any problems. Generally, symptoms of a struggling liver will show up elsewhere. You may feel a dull ache, itchy skin, fatigue, yellowing skin, etc. Essential oils for liver detox allows the liver to function more efficiently. As the liver moves out toxins they must leave the body before they cause serious damage.
How Can Essential Oils Help You Detox?
Essential oils are a great way to support your liver during detox and are quick and simple to apply. Essential oils are very potent and can be an effective remedy if used correctly. Certain oils are hepatic, which means they stimulate, strengthen, and tone the liver helping increase bile flow and detoxification. Others can also be used as an anti-inflammatory, or aid in lymph circulation and gallbladder support, which all contribute to a healthy liver.
Tips for Getting Started with Essential Oils for Liver Detox
Essential oils are a powerful mechanism to clear the body naturally. They are highly concentrated plant extracts designed to heal, but they aren’t enough on their own. You need to do a little prep work before you start to ensure effective results.
- Start with the basics. No amount of essential oils are a substitute for the four basics: diet, sleep, exercise, and water. Start incorporating these things into your lifestyle to take care of your liver every day.
- Please be careful using any detox method if you are pregnant, have allergies, or are under the care of a physician. Always check with your doctor first.
- Make sure your bowel is clear before you begin to detox and use effective binders such as activated charcoal, Pectasol-C (my personal fave), or Enterosgel, which are better than coriander oil or chlorella.
Essential oils are a safe and natural alternative to other harsh detox methods. However, it is recommended to try the oil on a small patch of skin to test for irritation before use. Redness, itching, irritation, and other adverse effects are likely to be signs of an allergy. Although rare, if you experience an extreme reaction, discomfort, and more severe symptoms, appropriate medical attention is most certainly advised.
What Essential Oils Are Good for Liver Detox?
These essential oils can all play a vital role in supporting the liver and other natural systems of elimination in the body. Any worthwhile recipe should include a combination that includes some of these essential oils for liver detox:
- Geranium: Aids the liver by expanding the liver’s bile ducts which helps with detox. Geranium is considered to be a powerful liver tonic.
- Rosemary: Enhances bile flow and reduces excess plasma liver enzymes. It also prevents toxic overload.
- Grapefruit: Antiviral, antiseptic, diuretic to help the digestive system and the skin. It also helps the body in decreasing unwanted mucus during detoxification.
- Peppermint: Anti-inflammatory that cleanses the lymphatic system and releases sluggish digestion by decreasing inflammation.
- Oregano: Powerful, anti-bacterial to clear those out of your system.
- Lemongrass: Analgesic, anti-fungal, antioxidant and essential for drainage.
- Ginger: This is a well-known stomach soother that aids in digestion and eliminates nausea.
- Juniper: Helps the body to throw off toxic waste, improves elimination and supports the liver functions.
- Fennel: Aids in digestion and alleviates both nausea and constipation.
- Carrot Seed: Aids in the repair, regeneration, and detoxification of liver cells.
- German Chamomile: Stimulates bile secretions and supports liver detox.
- Cypress: Stimulates and regulates liver secretions and supports cleansing and detoxification.
How to Pick Good Quality Oils
Choose your essential oils based on research, rather than the brand your bestie sells. Ask companies for their quality and purity tests and use brands who are happy to supply you with those reports (even if you can’t interpret them if the company provides them, they are a reputable source for essential oils).
Also keep in mind that essential oils should always be diluted in a carrier oil (i.e. fractionated coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil, jojoba oil, avocado oil, etc.). There are a few exceptions to this, but it is a good safety rule.
How Can You Use Them?
There are two main ways you can use these essential oils every day. Through diffusion or topical application, you can reap all the benefits of each oil.
- Diffusion: An oil diffuser releases oils into the air. Simply use one drop of each oil in the diffuser and leave it on for 30-45 minutes. Some oils can irritate airways when inhaled for long periods of time. So use sparingly until you understand your own limits.
- Topical Application: You can also use these blends directly on your liver by massaging that part of your abdomen (right-hand side below the ribs). The recommended dilution is 1 drop of each oil diluted in 1 tablespoon of carrier oil of your choice. If you respond positively, you can make it more concentrated but experts recommend not going higher than 2 drops of each oil in 1 tablespoon of carrier oil. You can also use a rollerball or a compress for topical application. Always do a patch test for topical oils to ensure you don’t have an adverse reaction.
Detoxifying foods are eaten in their whole ‘plant’ form, but we must never ingest any essential oil unless prescribed by a licensed medical practitioner.
Liver Detox Essential Oil Blends
Here are a few essential oils for liver detox recipes you can use. The best application for these combinations is to combine the ingredients into a dropper bottle, fill the dropper bottle to the shoulder with a carrier oil. Then use one dropper-full to topically spread over the liver area. For best results use first thing in the morning and before bedtime.
LIVER DETOX BLEND 1
- Juniper Berry
- Clove Bud
LIVER DETOX BLEND 2
- Carrot Seed
LIVER DETOX BLEND 3
- Carrot Seed
- German Chamomile
- Juniper Berry
Other Detoxifying Essential Oils
- Wild Orange: Great option for energizing after an exhausting detox.
- Lemon: Detoxifies and regenerates to help the liver and bring clarity to your mind.
- Lavender: For calming and removal of nervous exhaustion which aids in digestion.
While the human body is designed to clean itself, it is not designed to handle the overload of toxins we deal with in our diet and the environment around us. Since the 20th century, the human body has taken on more toxins than it can handle. It makes sense that because we often deliberately intoxicate our body through poor food choices, alcohol, marijuana, etc., we also must take the time to detoxify.
Essential oils have the unique ability to accelerate the way our body works to detox itself. However, because they don’t regularly appear in our diets, we must use them in other ways. Essential oils do exactly that.
As with any detox methods, take care to learn about the essential oils you’re using, and your individual reactions to ensure you have a pleasant and effective experience.