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By Columnist Trudy Cadoo – Senior Naturopath:



Photo credits: Fatty Change in Liver 2 via photopin (license) –

Fatty liver is a growing concern in Australia with about 10% of people diagnosed with this condition. Fatty liver is the most common reason for mildly abnormal liver test results, and it’s not isolated to adults only,  it is something we are seeing in children also.

Fatty liver can go unnoticed as it rarely causes pain, causes nausea or fatty food intolerance. You don’t even need to be overweight to experience a fatty liver, although it does make it harder for you to lose weight. Having a fatty liver can lead on to more complex health concerns such as, early onset diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity.

What Does the Liver Do?

The liver is one of the most overworked organs in the body. 

It’s situated on the upper right side of the abdomen just below the diaphragm, and it’s the largest internal organ of the human body weighing about 1.5 kg in the average adult. It has a very important role of removing toxins from the body, processing food nutrients and regulating the metabolism.

Is Fatty Liver Simply Caused By Eating Fatty Foods?  

No, it’s not all about fats.  A diet high in sugar, refined carbohydrates and alcohol can be associated with a fatty liver.  Other health problems such as obesity, high cholesterol, type two diabetes and less commonly under active thyroid can be associated with fatty liver, as well as polycystic ovarian syndrome.  Metabolic syndrome also plays a role in the development of fatty liver.  Often fatty liver is asymptomatic, although as the disease progresses symptoms such as fatigue, weight loss, abdominal discomfort, weakness and confusion may be experienced.

7 Steps to a Healthier Liver

1.Eat less sugar, processed food and carbohydrates – The biggest offender of the liver is the modern western diet. A diet high in sugars and foods made of white flour and highly processed ingredients contributes to ill health of the liver.

Your liver will benefit greatly by avoiding or restricting bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, processed biscuits, breakfast cereals and cakes.

2.Drink less alcohol – Alcohol not only damages liver cells it creates inflammation in the body. Moderation or avoidance is the key to supporting liver health.

3.Eat good quality whole food – Organic raw vegetables and fruits are the most powerful liver healing foods. Enjoy beetroot, broccoli, artichoke, lemon and bitter greens such as spinach, kale, beetroot greens on a regular basis as these specific foods can be of great benefit to the liver.  They help to repair and cleanse the liver and can be added into your diet through your hot meals, salads or juicing.

4.Eat protein throughout the day – Protein is important to have throughout the day as it helps to keep the blood sugars stable, which will also assist in maintaining a healthy weight. Proteins include eggs, fish, poultry, meat, nuts, seeds, legumes and dairy.

5.Learn to love water – Drinking two litres of fresh, filtered water every day helps your liver to flush out toxins and function at its full potential. Adding some lemon, apple cider vinegar or Swedish bitters will be beneficial not only for the liver, but those who suffer from sluggish bowels.

6.Liver Herbs – Globe artichoke, bupleurum, licorice, ginger, turmeric, fennel seed and of course my favourite milk thistle, as it’s not only detoxifying it’s also restorative.

7.Regular Exercise – Although the treatment for fatty liver is primarily based around diet, research shows exercise is also incredibly important regardless of whether or not your goal is to lose weight.

Liver Detoxifying Juice Recipe


Apples – 1 medium 3

Beet Root – 1/2 beet g

Carrots – 2 medium 244g

Celery – 1stalk, large

Cucumber – 1/2 cucumber 5

Spinach leaves 1/2 cup

Ginger Root – 1/2 thumb

Option to add fresh or dried turmeric 2g1

Water 200ml – 400ml


Process all ingredients in a juicer/blender, shake or stir and serve.

All the veggies and fruit found in this liver detoxifying juice help to keep the liver healthy. You will notice benefits beyond supporting your liver, your digestion will be improved and your skin will glow.


About Our Naturopathic News and Review ColumnistTrudy Cadoo - Logo

Trudy CadooTrudy Cadoo is a Senior Naturopath at Brisbane Livewell Clinic, Wavell Heights. She believes that health is more than the absence of disease. It is the balance of many factors including mental, emotional and physical well-being. Trudy uses a wide range of diagnostic tools to identify and treat presenting problems.  Trudy specialises in helping busy professional women gain more energy, increase their immune system and feel more vital and in control of their health.

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is based on the author’s professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape.


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