What Does the Liver Do to Hormones
The liver is a triangle-shaped, dark reddish-brown organ located in the upper right part of the abdomen, just below the diaphragm and above the stomach. On average, the liver of a healthy person weighs 1,500 grams.
Just beneath the liver lies the gall bladder, a pear-shaped organ responsible for storing bile, a fluid produced in the liver used to digest fats as part of the digestive process.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the liver and gallbladder together make up the wood system; and together, they make up the body’s detoxification organs. In simpler terms, everything we eat or drink is filtered here, including any medications and drugs we might intake. As a result our liver works very hard to get rid of what we don’t need, keeping our body free of toxins and maintaining our health. The liver is also responsible for regulating hormone levels, cholesterol levels and weight. For these reasons, this system also has an important role, and significant influence on women’s health.
According to TCM principles, if the liver and gallbladder fall out of balance they are described as stagnant or stuck, meaning energy does not flow smoothly through them.
How much do you know about – What does the liver do to hormones
In TCM practice, emotional and physical health are intimately linked. The approach is that of a linked mind and body where healing operates in a cyclical loop where emotions impact body health, and vice versa. A stagnant liver negatively affects the flow of life energy through the body and, as a result, creates a myriad of emotional imbalances leading to abnormal emotional activity.
When the liver is functioning correctly, blood and energy are able to flow freely throughout the body, and feelings can be expressed positively. We find social interactions easier; conversation is able to flow easily and it is easy to find the correct words.
Excessive signs of flexibility or rigidity, both physically and mentally, is related to the liver’s condition. This organ is related to anger and its control; similarly, excessive displays of anger or a total lack of it often indicates an imbalance in liver function.
Additionally, women’s physiology depends much more heavily on the liver than in men. The adequate flow and supply of blood and energy is critical to women’s sexual health during menstruation, pregnancy, labour and even breastfeeding throughout their lives. The liver, being a regulatory organ, ensures that blood flows efficiently, and in plentiful amounts to the uterus to support these activities.
Liver and gallbladder condition is often associated with affecting a person’s clarity of vision in the perception of ideas and real world situations, both in a physical and mental sense. When the physiology of the liver is disturbed, this can lead to several conditions.
Stagnation of energy flow, which can result in:
- Tender and swollen breasts
- Painful menstruation
- Absent or irregular menstrual cycles
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Irritability, anger, and impatience
It can also lead to an insufficiency of blood in the liver, causing:
- Dry or sore eyes
- Blurred or impaired vision
- Hot flushes
- Dry skin
- Joint pain
- Bloodshot eyes
- Muscle Spasms
How does all this affect your hormones?
- Estrogen: An important function of the liver is to eliminate excess estrogen. When estrogen exceeds adequate levels, it can cause PMS, heavy periods, breast tenderness, bloating, weight gain, and headaches. You can also have a build-up of more dangerous estrogen metabolites, which can increase your risk of breast cancer and other chronic
- Thyroid: Your liver is where many of your thyroid hormones are turned into active mode, so if your liver is overloaded, a deficiency of active thyroid hormones can slow down your metabolism, hold on to fat stores, and reduce your levels of e And likewise, a slow thyroid inhibits liver function!
- Blood sugar: Your liver plays a vital role in balancing your blood If your diet is too high in carbohydrates or under a lot of stress, your liver may have a hard time regulating blood sugar, which can cause fatigue, sugar cravings, fat storage (especially belly fat), mood swings, and mental confusion.
Health Recommendations for Liver
First and foremost, diet is the easiest way to promote a healthy liver and gallbladder.
Stop eating two to three hours before sleeping.
Eating late at night creates stagnation in the liver and prevents our body from cleaning and repairing itself at night.
Stop eating when you feel 80% full.
Overeating creates more pressure on the liver and gallbladder. Only eat to the point where you feel full but can still eat a little more.
Eat lots of cruciferous vegetables
These include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, turnip, kale, and watercress. They contain liver-supporting phytochemicals that are activated when chewed, fermented, cooked, or digested and are especially rich in diindolylmethane (DIM), which is effective in detoxifying excess estrogen.
Avoid plastics near your food.
Plastics contain xenoestrogens that mimic estrogen in the body, working to interfere with the balance of estrogen relative to your other hormones. These toxins in plastics leach into what they come in contact with, so it is especially important to remove plastics that come into contact with your food and beverages.
More water, less coffee, and less alcohol.
Coffee and alcohol are some of the biggest shocks to the liver. When the liver is busy detoxing caffeine and alcohol, it won’t have the capacity to detox other substances.
Support your liver with vegetables and the nutritional supplements it needs
Our Liver needs to be well-nourished to remove toxins from the body. All B Vitamins, selenium, and vitamin E are key cofactors for this. Also Beta carotenes (vitamin A), vitamin C, copper, zinc, manganese, coQ10, and bioflavonoids. They all are excellent nutrition sources to keep a healthy Liver.
Acupuncture and physical activity improve hormone levels
- Acupuncture and exercise improve hormonal levels and menstrual bleeding patterns in women
- Acupuncture regulates hormones and neurotransmitters that are known to affect your mood and well-being
It’s very common to experience profound relaxation, sleep, or a break in stress inducing thoughts during an acupuncture session. Acupuncture aims to relax your nervous system by releasing beta-endorphins and other mood-enhancing substances.
It can also lower cortisol levels (your stress hormone) while increasing serotonin levels, the chemical that improves mood, digestion, sleep, and cognitive performance. Acupuncture has been shown in certain trials to help with anxiety and depression symptoms.
If you are struggling with chronic pain, attempting to overcome reproductive difficulties or menopause, or are under continual stress, acupuncture should be an important part of your treatment strategy.
For more information about what does the liver do to hormones, book your free consultation with our Chinese Medicine experts today
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our clinics website: GinSen where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.