I’ve been meaning to research and write on liver cells and the idea around a liver cleanse for quite some time. 

Ionic Foot Detox

You know what I did recently for my soon-to-be sister-in-laws bachelorette party? A foot detox; an ionic foot detox in particular. 

As part of the spa package we got, this foot detox was included.

Have you ever done one?

So you put your feet in water with salt and some magnetic piece that is supposed to “detox” via the feet. Then, they give you a chart for what the different colors you see coming out mean.

I placed the foot detox color chart on one of my Pinterest boards so you can see it.

Anyways, at the end my color was mostly a lightish brown. Therefore, the conclusion was detoxing the liver.

Now, let me be very clear. I don’t even truly believe that the foot detox is indicative of anything. Honestly. Why? Because most everyone had the same color at the end, except for some was lighter brown and others leaned more towards black.

But nonetheless, it felt good and reminded me of so many recent conversations around the gut and liver connection.

What is the Liver

Let’s start with the most basic question,

What is the liver?

First, so you know, the liver, “is essential for digesting food and ridding your body of toxic substances.”

This fact in and of itself explains why we must ensure the liver functions properly. It also helps explain why, when it’s not, digestion is off.

Furthermore, according to my podcast interview with Dr. Pedre, it is the liver that is one of his 3 pillars for detoxification. You can listen to the full episode HERE.

Largest Internal Organ

Liver Cells agutsygirl.com largest internal organ #liver #livercells

Did you know? The liver is your largest internal organ.

Here are some more things to know about the liver:

  • It’s an organ about the size of a football
  • Sits under your rib cage to the right of your abdomen
  • In the shape of a cone
  • The liver regulates most chemical levels in the blood and excretes bile
    • Bile helps carry away waste and break down fats in the small intestine during digestion
  • More than 500 vital functions have been identified with the liver
  • Clears the blood of drugs and other poisonous substances
  • It can regenerate on its own
  • Is a critical hub for numerous physiological processes (macronutrient metabolism, blood volume regulation, immune system support, endocrine control of growth signaling pathways, lipid and cholesterol homeostasis, and the breakdown of xenobiotic compounds, including many current drugs)

Sources: HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE.

Liver Cells

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Liver Cells detoxifying liver agutsygirl.com #liver #livercells #liverdetox

Now, before you decide if and how you might partake in a liver cleanse, let’s first also do a brief overview of the liver cells.

The liver contains many different cell types (hepatocytes, biliary epithelial cells (cholangiocytes), stellate cells, Kupffer cells, and liver sinusoidal endothelial cells).

Of all these cells types, the hepatocytes are primary. Each type does and means different things for processing.

I’m not going to cover this full biology. But if it’s interesting to you, check out The Liver Biology HERE.

After a wound or other damage, all the cells in the liver change and divide until the normal size of the liver is restored. 

Do you need a liver cleanse?

The liver is essential; no one gets through life without one.

So is that why the liver cleanse is so popular?

When I think of the liver, I think “filtering system.” As you saw above, the liver has so many critical functions, but acting as a filter is dominant.

And it’s in this regard why I believe the idea of a liver cleanse is so common.

In theory, our idea of doing a liver cleanse means that we will ultimately process everything that enters our body in a better, more efficient way.

A Liver Cleanse is Not Necessary

But the liver cleanse that is touted (via teas, detoxes, and other programs) is probably not necessary.

Here are some ideas out there that agree with this:

  1. Cleanses have not been proven to rid your body of damage from excess consumption (of food or alcohol).
  2. When you purchase expensive (or not expensive) “liver detox formulas,” you could be doing your body more harm than good.
  3. Most liver cleaning products and supplements haven’t been tested in clinical trials and aren’t regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
  4. The liver is smart; it cleans itself. In other words, it doesn’t need you.

But even still, the research says that certain things can help liver function. I believe in adding in more rather than taking out more. So with that, here are some things the research says might support your liver.

Liver Support

Liver Cells agutsygirl.com liver support supplements #liver #livercells
  1. Milk Thistle
  2. Turmeric
  3. Dandelion root
  4. Vitamin A. Those with any sort of pre-existing liver damage might be deficient in Vitamin A. It’s never a good idea to supplement without knowing your numbers, but if your liver is a concern, then check in on your Vitamin A levels. If you’re low, I love the Perfect Supplements Desiccated Liver Capsules. I also have these, so if you purchase them, you can use my code GUTSY10 at checkout to save 10%.


  1. Do not drink alcohol in excess (men = three per day, women = two per day).
  2. Know about any family history of liver disease.
  3. Make note that while I don’t discuss much about weight on this website, you should know the facts: “Obesity significantly increases your risk of developing nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.”
  4. According to Dr. Josh Axe, “Coffee enemas help with constipation, reduce fatigue, and aid in liver detoxification.”
Liver Cells agutsygirl.com lifestyle for liver support #liver #livercells

By all means, I do believe we need to understand the work with our liver function better.

I think we need to place less burdens on it via everything from the food we eat (or don’t) to the amount of alcohol we drink, and even to the every day toxins and chemicals we come into contact with.

If you’re wondering whether or not your liver is functioning optimally, check for these 7 symptoms:

  1. Urine that’s the color of iced tea
  2. Yellowing (jaundice) of your eyes
  3. Stools that look like clay
  4. Itching that won’t subside with lotion and keeps you up at night
  5. Ankle swelling
  6. Abdominal swelling
  7. Chronic fatigue

By the way, if you read my post on pooping Q&A’s, you know that the stools would look like clay due to a lack of bile or perhaps bile obstruction.

Liver Cells agutsygirl.com 7 signs your liver is not working properly #liver #livercells

It’s all intertwined. And I hope you’re seeing that with each new post I research and write.

By the way, if you want to track symptoms, overall healing or health, be sure you have a copy of the journal. If you don’t want the printed, spiral-bound version, you can get the PDF version HERE and download it right now.

Sources: HERE, HERE, and HERE.

If you liked this post, you might also enjoy:

  1. Gut Cleanse {and 22 Gut Healthy Foods}
  2. Toxic Beauty
  3. Reset Your Gut {30-Day Gut Reset with Clean Eating Magazine}


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