Liver is an internal organ that is important for carrying out metabolism in a proper and adequate way. The left and right lobes, gallbladder, intestines and pancreas work together along with the liver to complete the metabolism process. Liver just like other vital organs, is an indispensable organ. Liver and thyroid are interdependent. Diseases and disorders of thyroid are often related to liver abnormalities. The liver health if not looked after diligently, can open the doors to a host of other liver diseases and damages. Of which, a sluggish liver is one such disorder. To safeguard the liver health, undergoing the thyroid test and liver test function is necessary in the long run.
Symptoms of sluggish liver
Basically, a sluggish liver is when the liver doesn’t function optimally. Sluggish liver is the term given to a dysfunctional liver. There can be a wide variety of factors responsible for this. Alcohol, diabetes, exposure of liver to metallic content from foods, lack of exercises and many more other factors are responsible for causing a sluggish liver.
Following described are the symptoms of a sluggish liver:
A poorly functioning liver shows on the appearance of the skin as well as emergence of skin diseases. The person starts getting dark under-eye circles, pimples, acne and even psoriasis. These are indicators that the liver is not functioning properly and is putting out body toxins through skin.
When the liver functioning isn’t proper, the cholesterol levels tend to fluctuate. High cholesterol and triglyceride levels can lead to toxin accumulation in your blood which can cause death. Undergoing periodic liver function test to avoid such events is a must.
Blood sugar levels:
Blood sugar levels also go for a toss when liver functioning is improper. Liver is responsible for regulation of blood sugar levels. However, when that does not happen, it leads to reduction of appetite, vomiting, fatigue, dizziness etc.
Deteriorated digestion capacity:
Constipation, hemorrhoids, poor digestion and a reduced metabolic capacity are common signs of a poorly functioning liver.
Uterine fibroids, irregular and heavy menstrual bleeding, hot flashes, menopausal issues are just a few gynecological issues triggered because of sluggish liver.
Alcohol intolerance: In event of the person suffering from a sluggish liver, the person’s body becomes intolerant to alcohol. People having a faulty liver are also intolerant to fat rich foods.
Anger and mental issues: Recurrent headaches, distracted mind, anger management issues, mood swings and irritability are just few signs the body gives when liver is not functioning properly.
Since digestion takes a beating because of a sluggish liver, weight issues are bound to come up. The person may put on weight suddenly and also find that their efforts at weight loss aren’t going anywhere.
The thyroid gland that resides in the frontal area of the throat secretes hormones namely – thyroxine and triiodothyronine. These hormones control one’s energy levels along with the metabolic rate. There are studies being conducted that suggest a connection between thyroid levels of a person and liver issues. Just as mentioned above, the liver is responsible for regulation of different processes in the body, it is also responsible for thyroid disorders and disorders that are triggered because of hormonal imbalance. If the conversion of thyroxine to triiodothyronine doesn’t take place effectively, that indicates a faulty liver.
Therefore it is important to maintain healthy thyroid levels to have a healthy liver and vice versa.
Dietary ways to protect your liver and thus also your thyroid gland:
The following points can help you have a healthy liver and keep your thyroid gland in good shape at the same time:
- Iodine: Iodine is an important element in order to help the thyroid gland manufacture the hormones T4 and T3. Therefore, it is important to try and obtain adequate iodine in your routine diet. These days, iodine deficiency is becoming a common health issue among people. A urine test can determine your body’s iodine levels and whether they are at acceptable levels. Seafood and seaweed is a rich source of iodine. Kelp, a type of seaweed, is a rich source of iodine that is available in supplement form as well.
- Selenium: Selenium is another element instrumental in conversion of the thyroid hormone T4 to T3. Make sure that you get adequate amounts of selenium from your everyday diet. Brazil nuts are the richest dietary source of selenium. That said, consuming supplements is necessary to continue having optimal levels of selenium in the body.
- Iodine and selenium content are also known to be found in health capsules for thyroid patients. Patients who are on prescription medicine for thyroid hormone disorder benefit from such supplements as that enables their system to absorb the medication in a better way. Selenium in turn also protects the immune system and can prevent advent of autoimmune diseases.
- Protein: The amino acid tyrosine is a building block of protein and is also a requisite factor for production of thyroid hormones. Tyrosine is mainly found in protein rich foods such as dairy products, wheat, oats, nuts, meats, fish, eggs, beans. It is also present in bananas, avocados and almonds. The goodness of protein rich foods is further enhanced as it is also loaded with zinc. This element is needed by the thyroid hormone receptors in your cells, to allow thyroid hormones to bind there. However not just consumption of enough protein very necessary, the correct digestion of the protein is also needed. If the dietary protein is not properly processed and digested it can spell further trouble in form of Irritable bowel syndrome, bloating, heartburn, reflux and what not.
- Vegetables: Vegtables belonging to the cabbage family such as kale, broccoli, cauliflower are a good way to keep the liver and thyroid in a good condition.
- Liver detoxification program: In liver detoxification programs, one is usually recommended to stay away from foods that are hard to digest. Dairy products, nuts, seeds etc. also are included. It is also advisable to exclude refined sugars, fatty foods, junk foods like pizza, pasta, fries etc. These foods cause an impediment in absorption of thyroid hormones in the body.
- Foods rich in vitamin D: Shortage of vitamin D is directly connected to an autoimmune disease triggered by hypothyroidism. Milk, dairy products, fish oils and meat are foods that are rich in vitamin D. These food products can keep hypothyroidism at bay.
- Healthy fats: Not all fat sources are harmful for the body. Few fat sources found in coconut, cashew-nuts, coconut oil, dark chocolate are necessary for keeping thyroid problems at bay. These products work to keep one’s blood sugar levels to an optimal level, in turn protecting the body from hypothyroidism.
Therefore, to sum up, thyroid health and liver functioning go hand in hand. A fluctuation in either causes health problems and disruption of overall bodily processes. It is always better to go in for further testing if you notice symptoms of sluggish liver. That way you will be insured from liver problems and thyroid disorders as well. The liver (person) can lead a healthy life only if his liver (organ) is in a good working condition!