My Liver, the Couch Potato

Mark O’Donnell, who is a professional health and fitness coach has a wonderful article over at the Fitness Spotlight called Speed Up Your Metabolism-Fatty Liver Disease.

The article is important because it shows the importance of the liver in weight loss. Additionally, even if you aren’t over weight but don’t feel your best, there’s a good chance, in our culture that the liver is involved.

One thing Mark does leave out in his article is the effect of emotional stress on the liver. Emotional stress is anything that causes a stressed feeling in the body. It can be worry about work, feeling overwhelmed or being frustrated that you aren’t where you are in your life. These are all stressful things. Moving is a stress, as is planning a wedding or getting a divorce. Change in general is stressful. These add to the burdens that the liver has to deal with in it’s daily life.

From the paradigm of an acupuncturist, one of the main functions of the liver is to keep the body’s energy system moving. Emotions are energy. We are all familiar with them. When we are constantly stuck with one emotion or desperately trying not to feel a particular emotion (often fear), we don’t allow our liver to function fully. Things come to a stop. We end up in endless frustration. We move from one worry to another and are never able to move through the spectrum of appropriate emotions.

Like our emotional state, our body finds it harder to move. Our metabolism slows down because nothing is moving. Our digestion might slow. We put on more weight.

Treating your liver well and keeping it moving, through detoxifying it when appropriate, or at least being aware of the work it is doing is a good place to start keeping the liver working. Next time you think that store purchased chocolate cake will make you feel better, consider what the high fructose corn syrup is dong to your liver. You might choose to have it anyway, but make a plan to work with your liver after to keep it happy.

If you need ideas on how to keep your liver happy or if you want to read more about fatty liver disease, check out the article linked above. It’s packed with a lot of excellent information.

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Bonnie Koenig has been a licensed acupuncturist since 1999. She is passionate about helping people find real healing and real health. In the process she keeps asking about our attitudes towards sickness and health. Only by being clear on what sickness is, can we ever find health.

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