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Targeted Liver Support for Healthy Hormones

Updated: Mar 15, 2023

The liver is an amazing organ, involved in over 500 processes in the body. I find when supporting patients that nearly everyone I work with can benefit from some additional liver support. This is not only due to our lifestyle factors, but unfortunately, the huge toxic load from our environments and the effect of endocrine disrupting chemicals on our bodies and this effect on the liver. The liver is so busy processing these toxins, that it cannot focus on its core essential functions.

With hormone balance, the liver plays such a crucial role in maintaining balance and recycling hormones through detoxification pathways, that if it is overloaded or overburdened, this can manifest in a whole host of symptoms and hormonal issues.

The good news, however, is that there are LOADS of ways we can support liver detoxification pathways using herbs, nutrition and medicinal mushrooms. I'm going to share some ways your can support your liver for better health below. The liver is a remarkable organ which can self-repair incredibly well (up to a point) and when it's functioning optimally you will really feel the difference in energy, libido and mood as well as see a difference in metabolism and skin!

Some signs and symptoms that the liver may be struggling

  • Dark bags under eyes

  • Severe PMT, or longer luteal period symptoms.

  • Heavy periods, clots, painful periods

  • Skin issues, redness, eczema, psoriasis, hormonal acne

  • Frequent headaches and migraines

  • Difficulty fasting and blood sugar issues

  • Fatigue and low mood

  • Anger, the liver energetically is linked with anger

  • Anxiety

  • Weight gain around the middle

  • Insomnia

  • Inflammation and joint pain.

  • Constipation and bloating.

Stressors on the Liver

  • Too much coffee

A daily coffee can provide many health-promoting benefits as it's full of antioxidants. However, more than one can place significant strain on the liver so try to keep it to one daily. I always recommend having a good quality organic coffee because intensively farmed and processed coffee can contain tons of pesticides and toxins which stress the liver.

There are also lots of medicinal mushroom coffee blends available now that combine mushrooms like Lion's Mane with good quality coffee to reduce the negative effect of the coffee whilst supporting you mentally and physically with the health-promoting qualities of medicinal mushrooms.

  • Alcohol, sad but true

Many women find that from their late 30s onwards, their tolerance to alcohol goes down. This is because our livers are not able to process alcohol as efficiently as we age. That one or two glasses of wine really do have an impact the next day. Alcohol takes priority by the liver when ingested: the liver immediately acts to detoxify and process it. This means the other important functions like hormone detoxification take second place. If you do drink alcohol, try to do it occasionally, once weekly max. and limited to a few drinks. Have glasses of water in between drinks. Binge drinking is very harmful to the liver.

  • Environmental Toxins and Processed foods

In hair care, skin care, food, vegetables, fruits, drinking water, fragrances, room fresheners, household cleaners, detergents, clothes, in our air.. .. these chemicals are literally everywhere. Research confirms this places extra stress on our livers and in turn, our hormones.

  • Certain Medications

Some medications are necessary and prescribed for particular conditions, however many over-the-counter medicines can place great strain on the liver and detoxification and are unhelpful in the long run. Be mindful of how often you are taking paracetamol or similar; try to get to the root cause of your symptoms by working with a Medical Herbalist or health professional rather than putting extra daily strain on your liver by masking your symptoms with over-the-counter medications.



Change plastic packaging at home to glass, eliminate artificial fresheners from your home, consider using natural cleaners using plant-based materials, limit coffee and alcohol, and move daily with exercise and walking.

The Environmental Working Group is an excellent resource to help find info on reducing toxic load including listing the dirty dozen of the most sprayed fruits and vegetables.


There are many foods that actually help support liver health and function

  • Broccoli, kale, cauliflower, brussels, and radish are part of the cruciferous family, and full of compounds that support the liver. Sprouts like broccoli sprouts are even more concentrated sources of these compounds. Try to have at least one serving of cruciferous veg daily, in salads, stir-fries, smoothies, and cauliflower rice.

  • Lemons. The simple lemon has many phytochemicals that promote detoxification through the liver A good way to do this is by drinking lemon water daily. Just a slice in either cold or boiled water. NB ensure you use unwaxed organic lemons.

  • Garlic. Add garlic as much as possible to foods. A small clove of garlic activates liver enzymes that help your body to flush out toxins. It is also rich in Allicin and Selenium, two natural compounds that aid in liver cleansing.

  • Turmeric. Add a teaspoon to curries, soups, and stews and make a turmeric latte, link to a great recipe HERE. This turmeric latte is super tasty and packed full of phytochemicals to support liver health and detoxification, have it in the evening and support your liver detoxify overnight or instead of your coffee.

  • Beetroot. The humble beetroot is such an amazing food for the liver: bake, juice, boil, ferment, and add to many foods as you can. Beetroot is rich in glutathiones – a compound found in the phytonutrients betalains – which helps in detoxifying the liver. Additionally, beetroot has been clinically researched to improve athletic performance and lower blood pressure. A wonderful medicinal food!


Make sure you move, the liver needs movement. On a long-term basis, inactivity increases the risks of having a fatty liver that can lead to a buildup of lipids and carbohydrate reserves in the liver leading to disease. To allow your body to get rid of this lipid and carbohydrate reserve, regular physical activity is necessary.

We were not made as humans to be seated all day. It's important to incorporate daily walking and exercise for at least 30 mins, ideally 3 to 5 times weekly.


  • Magnesium is extremely important in healthy liver function and deficiency has been reported in fatty liver disease and insulin resistance. Unfortunately, many of us do not get enough magnesium through our diet due to the depletion of soils through intensive farming. Magnesium Glycinate is my preferred form as is gentle and relaxing, ideal to take before bed, and I use a company called Pure Encapsulations.

  • B complex A good quality B complex supports healthy liver function and detoxification pathways. B12 and folic acid in particular have been shown to positively impact liver health, and reduce liver inflammation. ( )

If you'd like a 20% discount on Supplements from the Natural Dispensary you can use my code SR20 and get 20% off all orders.


  • Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum)

One of my favourite liver-supporting herbs with good evidence that it can protect the liver from various toxins. The flavonoids in milk thistle can increase the production of glutathione, a strong antioxidant.

Add half a teaspoon to your morning smoothie, as a tincture or take it in a capsule.

  • Burdock ( Arctium lappa)

Traditionally burdock root has been used to support the liver. A great detoxifier and increases bile flow. I use it particularly in skin conditions, like hormonal acne, cysts, psoriasis and connected to liver stagnation.

Use as a tincture or as part of a decoction.

  • Dandelion Root ( Taraxacum officinale)

A strong root to help detoxify. The leaf is more diuretic in action whilst the root is a liver herb increasing bile flow. A great addition to a Spring or Seasonal Cleanse.

Have as a decoction or tincture or powder. Can also be a good coffee alternative.

  • Schizandra (Schisandra chinensis)

A powerful liver detoxifier and adaptogen. I use it very effectively with women with liver stagnation, oestrogen excess and in the perimenopause transition to support hormone balance.

Use in a tincture combined with other herbs or as capsules or powder.

  • Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)

Rosemary contains antioxidants that protect the liver from damage, and other compounds, including rosmarinic acid. I use it for supporting healthy oestrogen metabolism. One of the best ways to use it is in cider-infused vinegar.

I make my own raw fermented apple cider vinegar however you can easier buy raw cider vinegar, and add fresh or dried rosemary into it to infuse. This makes an amazing base for salad dressing and you can have it as a cold or warm drink. It is quite energising so best to have it earlier in the day as a good alternative to coffee.

  • Reishi (Ganoderma Lucidum)

Reishi helps to balance the levels of liver enzymes and it raises levels of glutathione, one of the most powerful antioxidants in your body. Antioxidants are crucial for eliminating free radicals from the body.

Myco Nutri does very good quality powdered reishi capsules and powder.

I hope this information is helpful and gets you to appreciate and give some love to your liver.

If you desire further support: I can help you get your health and vitality back on track by addressing the root cause of your symptoms and treating the underlying issue with herbs, nutrition, medicinal mushrooms and lifestyle changes. I work online and in person. Book in for a FREE 15 min call to discuss your concerns and make a plan of action to help you finally feel your best.

Follow me on Instagram @sararooneyherbalist


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