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The Best Nutrients For Liver Health

Liver diseases are the second-leading cause of death in the digestive disease category. Almost 5 million people suffer from liver disease in the United States, and it contributes to more than 40,000 deaths annually. It is a global issue and the numbers are steadily increasing.

The liver is so important. It is responsible for metabolizing food and storing important nutrients for later use. It also monitors and protects the body from any potentially harmful substances and will attempt to neutralize any threat to the immune system.

It is vital to protect your liver in order to avoid diseases. Here are some of the best nutrients you can add to your diet today to make sure your liver is happy and healthy.

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Vitamin D

Low Vitamin D levels are associated with all liver diseases. Bile production is inhibited when there is a lack of Vitamin D in the body. There is also a correlation between nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and low Vitamin D levels.

A lack of Vitamin D can also lead to liver inflammation and insulin resistance. So it is essential to get enough Vitamin D. Aside from basking in natural sunlight you can also eat foods such as egg yolks, cod liver, beef liver, cheese, and fatty fish to increase your Vitamin D levels.

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Vitamin C

Vitamin C deficiency has been found in people who suffered from liver damage from bile duct cirrhosis and alcohol. Vitamin C is also usually associated with the relief of overall oxidative stress and healthy collagen levels. It can also offer protection from pesticides and toxins that are harmful to the body making it extra useful to the liver.

The best sources of Vitamin C include oranges, kale, cauliflower, broccoli, cantaloupe, strawberries, and pineapple.

Photo: Shutterstock/Evan Lorne

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an antioxidant and fat-soluble vitamin that can greatly improve liver function. Vitamin E is useful for reducing the liver enzymes that cause inflammation and stress. It also helps to downregulate the genes involved in cholesterol production and oxidative stress. Lowering both of these can boost liver detox and repair.

Some good sources of Vitamin E are kiwi, butternut squash, broccoli, almonds, avocados, sunflower seeds, spinach, and other leafy greens.

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Omega 3

The liver is responsible for processing all of our dietary fats so it can be affected if the ratio of Omega 3 to Omega 6 fats is skewed. Many Americans eat far more Omega 6’s than they do Omega 3’s. However, Omega 3 fatty acids can actually reverse liver damage along with improving insulin sensitivity, reducing inflammation, and lowering elevated liver enzymes and high triglycerides.


Try eating these foods to increase your levels of Omega 2 fatty acids: flaxseed, chia seeds, walnuts, cod liver oil, and fatty fish.

Photo: Shutterstock/Evan Lorne


Zinc deficiency can lead to problems in the liver because it is an essential trace mineral needed for cell development. A lack of zinc can also result in decreased liver repair which can lead to liver lesions if the liver is unable to repair wounds. Zinc has also been known to be vital in preventing liver cirrhosis. Not to mention the liver is responsible for metabolizing zinc.

Some of the best foods to help you get your zinc levels up include almonds, cashews, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, chickpeas, dark chocolate, eggs, dairy, meat, and shellfish.

Photo: Shutterstock/Evan Lorne

Alpha Lipoic Acid & CoQ10 (Coenzyme)

Alpha Lipoic Acid can offer protection from the inflammatory effect high Omega 6 has on the liver. The body produces alpha lipoic acid but sometimes it cannot produce enough to keep up with the oxidative stress the body may take on throughout its lifetime. The liver, especially, can be vulnerable to oxidative stress.

Alpha Lipoic Acid also reduces reactive oxygen species and lowers triglycerides which removes the burden from the liver. It is also known to help enhance the effects and activity of other liver-strengthening nutrients.

Try eating some of these foods to increase your Alpha Lipoic Acid: Brussels sprouts, broccoli, spinach, grass-fed beef, and organ meats.

CoQ10 is a fat-soluble nutrient associated with brain and heart health but it is also helpful to the liver. CoQ10 aids the liver in detox, helping it get rid of toxins in the body. It also lowers inflammatory liver enzymes and c-reactive proteins. CoQ10 helps the liver adapt to stress and stay healthy.

Great sources of CoQ10 are peanuts, pistachios, sesame seeds, broccoli, cauliflower, strawberries, spinach, fatty fish, and meat.


The liver is so important to overall health and wellness and must be protected. It is important to eat a well-balanced diet and reduce liver-harming activities. A happy liver can lead to a long happy life.