Some of the best foods and drinks that are good for the liver include:
A 2013 review shows that over 50 percent of people in the United States consume coffee on a daily basis.
Coffee seems to be good for the liver, especially because it protects against problems like fatty liver disease.
The review also finds that consuming coffee daily may help reduce your risk of chronic liver disease. It can also protect the liver from harmful conditions like liver cancer.
A 2014 study suggests that coffee’s protective effects are due to how it affects liver enzymes.
Coffee, it reported, appears to reduce fat build-up in the liver. It also increases protective antioxidants in the liver. Compounds in coffee also help liver enzymes rid the body of cancer-causing substances.
Eating oatmeal is an easy way to add fiber to your diet. Fiber is an important tool for digestion, and the specific fibers in oats can be especially helpful for the liver. Oats and oatmeal are high in compounds called beta-glucans.
According to a 2017 study, beta-glucans are very biologically active in the body. They help modulate the immune system and fight inflammation, and they can be especially helpful in fighting diabetes and obesity.
The review also found that beta-glucans from oats appear to help reduce the amount of fat stored in the liver of mice, which could also help protect the liver. However, more clinical studies are needed to confirm this.
People looking to add oats or oatmeal to their diet should look for whole or steel cut oats rather than packaged oatmeal. Pre-packaged oatmeal may contain fillers like flour or sugar, which are not as beneficial to the body.
3. Green tea
A 2016 review suggests that green tea may help reduce liver cancer risk in female Asian populations.
It’s important to note that tea can be better than extracts, as some extracts can damage the liver instead of healing it.
However, the study notes that more research is needed.
Adding garlic to the diet can also help stimulate the liver. A 2016 study found that consuming garlic reduced body weight and fat content in people with NAFLD without changing muscle mass. This is beneficial as being overweight or obese contribute to NAFLD.
Many dark berries, such as blueberries, raspberries, and cranberries, contain antioxidants called polyphenols that can help protect the liver from damage.
A 2013 rat study suggested that blueberry juice supplements might increase the liver’s antioxidant ability. The study also suggests that blueberry juice might help relieve liver fibrosis in the liver.
A 2014 study shows that grape seeds contain significant amounts of antioxidants, followed by the skin and pulp. These antioxidants have been linked to protecting against some causes of liver damage.
Eating whole, sown grapes is an easy way to add these compounds to the diet. A grape seed extract additive can also provide antioxidants.
Grapefruit contains two primary antioxidants: naringin and naringenin. These can help protect the liver from injury by reducing inflammation and protecting liver cells.
A 2019 study suggests that naringin may protect against alcohol-related liver steatosis by reducing oxidative stress.
8. Prickly pear
The fruits and juice of the prickly pear can also be beneficial for liver health. A 2014 study suggests that compounds in the fruit may help protect the organ from disease.
However, most of the research focuses on extracts from the fruit, so studies that focus on the fruit or juice itself may be needed.
9. Plant foods in general
A 2015 study reports that a large number of plant-based foods can be helpful for the liver.
- Beet and beet juice
- Brown rice
- Greens like kale and cabbage
People should eat these foods as part of a complete and balanced diet whenever possible.
10. Fatty fish
Consuming oily fish and fish oil supplements can help lessen the effects of conditions like NAFLD.
Fatty fish is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are the good fats that help reduce inflammation. These fats can be especially helpful in the liver as they appear to prevent excess fats from building up and help maintain enzyme levels in the liver.
Eating nuts can be another easy way to keep the liver healthy and protect it from NAFLD. Nuts generally contain unsaturated fatty acids, vitamin E, and antioxidants. These compounds can help prevent NAFLD as well as reduce inflammation and oxidative stress.
12. Olive oil
Eating too much fat isn’t good for your liver, but some fats can help. Adding olive oil to the diet can help reduce oxidative stress and improve liver function. This is due to the high content of unsaturated fatty acids in the oil.
However, clinical data on the benefits of olive oil for people with NAFLD is scarce.