by Lawrence Wilson, MD
Ó March 2013, The Center For Development
The liver is one of the most important organ in the human body, involved in at least 500 body functions. It is also one of the most abused organs today. This article discusses briefly how the liver works, some of the most common liver diseases, and what can be done about them using a nutritional balancing program.
Conditions discussed in this article include general liver toxicity, acute and chronic hepatitis, fatty liver, cirrhosis (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic), gall stones, parasites such as liver flukes, liver inflammation and pain, biliary stasis, and liver cancer.
BASIC LIVER PHYSIOLOGY
The liver contains amazing cells called hepatocytes that perform most of the hundreds of functions of the liver. This is the most important type of liver cell. Other cells have a more supportive role.
Everything that one ingests through the digestive tract first goes to the liver for processing before it is released into the main bloodstream. The job of the liver is to carefully screen or sort through everything one ingests, retaining that which is nutritious and rejecting and hopefully detoxifying and removing all toxins from the food, medications, alcohol and anything else that is ingested.
Today, this is a formidable and almost impossible job to do properly. The food is often of low quality, and often is laced with synthetic additives, such as preservatives, colors, flavors and hundreds of others that have no nutritional value whatsoever. Just understanding this one fact will give a large clue as to why the liver today is under constant assault in most people.
In addition, hundreds of toxins are all around us on items we touch, in the air and water, in our clothing, in the medical drugs and over-the-counter remedies, in the vaccines, and elsewhere. Filtering them all out of our bodies is quite a job.
The liver is able to metabolize or change many toxins so they can be eliminated from the body. Some of them are shunted into the blood stream and then removed by the kidneys. Others move to the bile, which is the secretion of the liver. Bile flows to the gall bladder for storage and perhaps more transformation, and then the bile flows into the small intestine and hopefully the toxins are eliminated in the feces. While this is very brief, it is the basic structure and functional set up of the liver.
WHY THE LIVER MATTERS SO MUCH
The liver performs about 500 functions, at least. Among these are detoxification, protein breakdown and re-synthesis of proteins from amino acids, changing amino aicds into one another, processing of fats, carbohydrates, production of digestive enzymes such as lipases, production of cholesterol, the raw material from which all of the sex hormones and steroid or stress hormones are made, and the list goes on.
The liver is one of the major detoxification organs of the body. It filters everything that comes into the intestines, and it filters the blood as well. This is its unique ability. It does much more than this, but this is a unique ability of the liver and one that no other organ can duplicate.
The way it filters the blood and the material from the intestines is not well understood. However, in an esoteric way it is able to distinguish harmful matter from vital nutrients, hormones, enzymes and other components. Somehow it is able to separate the two. Many toxins are changed by the liver into something less toxic. This is what happens with alcohol, for example.
In many other cases, the harmful drug or substance is simply moved out of the body by being shunted into the bile ducts and removed. Exactly how the liver can distinguish the good from the bad is quite a mystery, and it probably has to do with biochemistry and even the vibrational quality of the substance.
An entire lengthy book could be written about the many functions of the liver.
GENERAL LIVER TOXICITY
General liver toxicity is a good place to begin discussing liver dysfunctions, as general toxicity is universal today. It is also directly related to the cause of all the other liver conditions discussed in this article.
Causes for liver toxicity. Everyone’s liver is quite toxic today due to a combination of the following factors:
1. Eating many food additives on a daily basis.
2. The overuse of medical and over-the-counter drugs. For example, regular use of Tylenol and other OTC drugs is a leading cause of liver disease today.
3. Drinking alcohol.
4. Other dietary toxins such as iron that is added to white bread.
5. Environmental toxins, such as anti-perspirants, dental amalgams, shampoo containing selenium, hair dyes, occupational chemicals, and more.
6. Fermentation and putrefaction of food items in the intestinal tract, which produces alcohol, acetaldehyde, and other toxins.
7. Infections that secrete endotoxins and exotoxins that are quite harmful for the liver.
8. Subtle, but important nutrient deficiencies such as selenium, chromium, zinc, vitamin C and others that are needed for liver detoxification and other liver activities.
9. Widespread constipation, causing toxins to remain in the bowel too long.
Symptoms. One may not experience any obvious symptoms of liver toxicity. However, some people will experience constipation, bad breath, skin problems, upper right quadrant pain, bleeding disorders, other digestive disturbances such as gas, bloating, irritable bowel syndrome and others. Also, many people experience more serious diseases that actually originate in their toxic livers, which can no longer filter out poisons properly or perform their hundreds of other important functions properly.
Identifying general liver toxicity. This is difficult with standard medical tests. Blood serum liver enzyme tests are usually normal. Even a liver biopsy may look normal. Parasite tests may be negative. Testing for toxic chemicals is costly, so it is usually not done unless one has a high suspicion about the presence of a particular toxin.
I use hair mineral testing, which usually reveals the presence of toxic metals that always accumulate in the liver to some degree. In particular, copper, cadmium, mercury and lead always end up in the liver to some degree, at least.
Even most children have a toxic liver, as they were born somewhat toxic and made much worse by vaccines, medical drugs, poor food choices and exposure to other toxins, at times.
Correction. Nutritional balancing science is usually able to easily help people with general liver toxicity. The coffee enema and the near infrared lamp sauna are most helpful, as are the diet and supplements.
Healing on a nutritional balancing program may be slow, at first. The liver is simply incapable of removing many toxins quickly. Later on, as one becomes more healthy, the liver’s ability to process toxic substances improves rather dramatically.
A SLUGGISH AND CONGESTED LIVER
This often contributes heavily to liver toxicity, because it interferes with the proper functioning of the liver. As with a toxic liver, a congested and sluggish liver also is not revealed on most blood or other medical tests. Hair analysis indicators for it include a slower oxidation rate, a lower Na/K ratio less than about 2, higher toxic metal levels or a few poor eliminator patterns, (very low toxic metal readings), low zinc, and perhaps sympathetic dominance.
In addition, a sluggish and congested liver is more common with:
1. Slow oxidizers rather than fast oxidizers.
2. Adults than to children, generally, although today some children are so toxic that there are a few exceptions.
3. More emotional people, as compared to those who are unemotional. This is explained in more detail below.
4. Malnourished people, which is a common situation that affects the liver greatly.
5. Vegetarians, generally, as compared to omnivorous people. For example, the liver requires plenty of bioavailable zinc, iron and sulfur. These elements are far more common in animal proteins, and better utilized from these sources as well.
6. Those who use any medical drugs at all, and those who use any recreational drugs at all usually have a more toxic and/or more sluggish liver, or will in the future.
HEPATITIS AND OTHER LIVER INFECTIONS
Hepatitis is extremely common. It is often viral and there are several strains of it that are labeled A, B, C, D, E and perhaps others, today. All or almost all cases of hepatitis involve opportunist organisms. This means that if a person is healthy, one will not become infected, or if infection does occur, it will be mild and transient.
Today, most people, however, are not healthy. As a result, these opportunist strains of viruses and other micro-organisms are difficult to eradicate, at times. Using nutritional balancing science, even stubborn cases of Hepatits C or others usually will resolve quite easily within a year or less. We do not address the hepatitis as much as we address the overall condition of the body, strengthening and balancing the body so that it can remove the infection successfully and completely. Therefore, we do not like using drugs of any kind, or even megadoses of vitamin C or other nutrients, although high-dose vitamin C will often help. The problem is it makes the body more yin, which is not helpful.
PARASITIC INFECTIONS OF THE LIVER
The liver is the site of some parasitic infections. Of these, liver flukes are by far the most common. Many people have these, and they usually do not cause a lot of health problems. I believe testing for them is not worth the effort.
Other parasites that find their way into the liver include some species of amoebas, flagellated one-celled animals, trichina worms, perhaps tapeworms and at times, others. The liver is fairly resistant to parasites, but the bodies today are so toxic, and so out of balance, that parasites and other infections of the liver are common.
In almost all cases a nutritional balancing program will slowly remove all parasites from the liver. This may sound like a wild claim, but it is our day-to-day experience. I will explain how this works.
Parasites thrive, generally, in a toxic body. As the body heals and becomes better nourished and more balanced, substances are secreted by the body that are extremely toxic for all parasites. These include bioavailable copper, even some silver compounds, and many enzymes such as lysozymes that are proteolytic. This means they are capable of digesting proteinaceous material, which includes living organisms that do not belong there.
Our task, therefore, is to build up the body so that it begins to produce these substances in large enough quantity to halt the spread of parasites and slowly reduce their population. This is not as hard to do as it may seem. In fact, within a year or two of starting a nutritional balancing program, often the level of the parasites is significantly reduced.
In a few cases, other specific remedies may be needed to reduce the load of parasites. The problem with these is that if the body is not strong and balanced, and if we miss just a few parasites, they reproduce prolifically and will come back quickly. Also, most parasite remedies are somewhat toxic themselves, such as herbal remedies or drugs. This is not helpful for overall health, and in fact slows the general detoxification of the body. So for this reason, we rarely start with parasite remedies. Instead, we always start with a program for healing the entire body. As this occurs, usually the parasite problem diminishes and eventually vanishes.
EMOTIONS, LIFESTYLE AND THE LIVER
Certain emotions, notably anger, irritate the liver. This has been known for many years. In fact, in Shakespeare’s day, the liver was believed to be the seat of the emotions. This is largely true, in one sense. The liver is where certain minerals such as copper and iron are stored. Also, the liver is an entry point for etheric energy and when blocked, it leads to emotional outbursts. This is a bit complex. However, the liver is an important area for mental or spiritual development, as it is a site, one of several, in which a more advanced energy called etheric energy can enter the human body. When there is too much anger, this does not happen. This will cut short a life for this reason. This is why many wise people have advised that one should let go of anger at any cost to preserve life.
The influence of the liver on emotions is reflected, in fact, in common language, in expressions such as “She has a lot of gall”, or “He gave her a piece of his liver”, meaning he blew up in anger at her.
As the toxic metals are released from the liver, however, often if begins to function better and the emotions become calmer. Women often have a more toxic liver than some men because women have difficulty with anger more so than men. This may have to do with their higher copper levels, higher estrogen levels and other factors.
IRRITATION DUE TO A NUTRITIONAL BALANCING PROGRAM
We find that during a nutritional balancing program, at times the liver will become overloaded with toxins that are being released from storage sites throughout the body. This is akin to overloading a toilet, which causes it to back up. This will occasionally cause slightly elevated liver enzymes, for example, or some pain in the lower right side of the abdomen as the liver struggles to remove the toxins quickly enough.
In most cases, this will pass quickly. If it does not, we always suggest reducing the supplement program for a day or two, drinking more water and perhaps drinking distilled water for a few days, or taking an extra coffee enema, perhaps as well. In all cases, this type of liver irritation is benign and nothing to worry about. As the liver heals and becomes more able to remove toxins of all kinds, such symptoms tend to diminish.
SUGGESTIONS FOR ANYONE WITH LIVER DISEASE
Following a complete nutritional balancing program is the best option. However, one can begin immediately with the following “generic” suggestions. In some cases, they will be sufficient to resolve the problem without needing a full nutritional balancing program. I prefer a complete program because it will address other issues and it will promote mental development as well as resolve almost all liver conditions. Here are the generic suggestions:
1. Reduce the load of toxins that the liver must cope with on a daily basis by avoiding all processed foods, all food additives, alcohol and caffeine.
2. Learn how to substitute natural products for all over-the-counter and prescription drugs for common ailments such as allergies, colds, flu, infections, and all other health conditions as much as possible.
3. Use a powerful digestive aid every time you eat. I recommend GB-3 by Endomet Laboratories in Phoenix, Arizona. It contains a lot of ox bile, pancreatin, bile salts and Russian black radish. Taking a digestive aid of this type will not only increase bile flow. It will also reduce fermentation and putrefaction of food in the intestines. These two highly toxic processes release enormous quantities of toxic chemicals into the intestine that are absorbed into the liver in many people.
4. Improve your eating habits. This means do not drink much water with meals, eat slowly, chew thoroughly and do not overeat. Also, avoid eating when anxious, and keep meals very simple – one, two or three foods per meal only. These simple rules will also reduce harmful fermentation and putrefaction of your food.
5. Drink 3 quarts of water each day for adults. Drink only spring water or distilled water for a few months only. Avoid reverse osmosis water, alkaline waters and other types of water.
6. Follow the basic dietary suggestion for slow oxidizers discussed in The Slow Oxidizer Eating Plan. Especially eat cooked vegetables twice daily or more, filling at least half your plate with cooked vegetables.
7. Consider doing a coffee enema daily, and taking our basic supplement program, at the very least. This includes kelp capsules (3 daily), omega-3 fatty acids (1000 mg daily), vitamin D (5000 iu daily), and a product called Paramin from Endomet Labs that contains 250 mg calcium and 150 mg magnesium in each tablet (3 daily or more).
If this is not enough, then consider a complete nutritional balancing program, which will include having a hair mineral analysis to assess your metabolic type and rate, and many other parameters of the body chemistry. Then more specific supplementation, more specific dietary suggestions and other procedures can be suggested to enhance the simple measures above. In this way, most liver conditions can be overcome easily.
To be continued -