You probably don’t think much about the largest organ in the body…your liver. In fact, I’ll go as far as to say you take all the things your liver does for you on a daily basis for granted. How ungrateful and inconsiderate you are!
All kidding aside, your liver is really amazing. Did you know that everything you breathe, swallow, or absorb through the skin eventually ends up in your blood stream and eventually passes through the liver? Think of your liver like a powerful filter for your body. Although the liver does so much more than just filter out bad things, it is your body’s primary detoxifier.
Anybody that is familiar with me knows that I focus on hormonal and digestive health in my practice. The liver is very involved with both of these processes in your body. I’d like to emphasis the liver and it’s role in regards to hormones, but just to give you a new appreciation for your liver, below is a short list of the things it does.
- Metabolizes drugs and breaks down alcohol
- Removes harmful chemicals, bacteria, and excesses
- Regenerates/rebuilds itself! Remove part of it and it will grow back!
- Converts fats, proteins and carbohydrates to energy and nutrients
- Stores vitamins and minerals
- Filters blood, regulates blood clotting, and stores extra blood for quick release
- Creates immune substances such as gamma globulin
- Helps to maintain fluid and electrolyte balance
- Stores sugars as fuel for future use
Without question the liver is responsible for hundreds of (at least 500) functions in your body! Now, when it comes to hormones your liver does not just sit on the sideline. No way! Your liver function and hormone balance are intimately connected. It acts as a hormone processor, manufacturing and/or regulating some hormone levels, and directing various hormones to perform their proper function in other parts of the body.
Your liver creates bile to break down fats and eliminate fat-soluble toxins and excess substances, including excess hormones. It also creates serum proteins that act as hormone carriers, regulates sex hormone levels.
In addition your liver is the major producer of cholesterol, which, if you have read my articles on cholesterol, you understand that cholesterol is used in the production of hormones. In other words, no cholesterol, no hormones.
If your liver is over burdened, obviously it cannot perform at an optimal level and people can then experience the symptoms of hormonal imbalances. It is important to look at the function of your liver if you are suffering from hormonal problems. A specific diet and protocol can be recommended if that is the culprit.