November 4, 2009

The role of the liver is to help clear toxins from the body and facilitate digestion. The liver is the body’s largest organ and it works in conjunction with the gall bladder, pancreas and stomach. An unhealthy diet containing chemicals preservatives and other toxins as well as excessive vaccination, can place a toll on the liver. Poor eating habits may cause pain during the digestive process.

Conditions that are associated with the liver and gall bladder, include:

  • Vomiting
  • Brittle nails
  • Pain in the upper back
  • Irritability and aggression
  • Leg paralysis, tremors, lumps and swelling
  • Lick granulomas

The liver is associated with the eyes in Traditional Chinese Medicine, and healthy, bright, sparkly eyes reflect a healthy liver inside. Typically, according to TCM, the liver is more susceptible to problems during windy weather and in the springtime. For more information on how the liver is regarded in TCM, we highly recommend Cheryl Schwartz’ book, Four Paws Five Directions.

Many of these conditions tend to be more prevalent in the spring – and aggression in particular tends to be more prevalent on windy days. Some pets may experience severe headaches, which cause them to rub their heads against you, their bedding, carpets or walls.

Foods that help to support liver health include: Leafy greens (especially dandelion), radish, celery and carrots, romaine lettuce and asparagus. Milk Thistle is the herb of choice for liver support. Cheryl Schwartz also recommends lavender and chamomile in the springtime, to restore liver circulation and support the liver’s health.