How the Liver Naturally Detoxifies and Cleanses with Panchakarma

April 19,2024

liver detox panchakarma

The liver serves as the body’s primary detoxification organ and plays a crucial role in processing and filtering toxins from the blood, as well as metabolising substances to be excreted. 

We want to keep the liver healthy, and we want to keep it functioning optimally. We need to do this by not just addressing the liver in isolation but the entire body as well. From an Ayurvedic perspective, we see the body as a whole organism, of which the liver plays an important part. This also includes what precedes liver health, i.e. the body’s digestion processes, and the health of our gut.

Symptoms such as high cholesterol can indeed be a symptom of a fatty liver, as impaired liver function can lead to disruptions in lipid metabolism, resulting in elevated cholesterol levels. Generally, in our Western medical world, once this is diagnosed people get prescribed cholesterol-lowering pharmaceutical drugs. However, the liver must then process these pharmaceutical drugs too, adding to its workload. Even conventional liver cleanses and liver detox supplements can have this same effect of needing to be processed by the liver.

Ayurvedic Medicine and Panchakarma

The Panchakarma purification and rejuvenation procedures utilised by Ayurvedic medicine aid in mobilising and clearing toxins that obstruct efficient liver function. The approach is designed to significantly improve one’s overall digestion and metabolism, rather than just giving isolated herbs or supplements specifically targeting the liver only. The purpose is to make one’s body able to metabolize fats better (so that there is less load on the liver in the first place), and help reduce or prevent health problems related to poor fat metabolism and fatty liver.

Panchakarma uses specific fats like ghee (clarified butter) or in some cases medicated oils to achieve several benefits. This stimulates the gallbladder, which produces the bile to help digest and break down unwanted fats. Healthy fats help to strengthen the overall liver function as well as nourish and strengthen the delicate digestive lining. Through a process called lipophilic-mediated detox, (particularly the Virechana and Batis therapies), fat-soluble toxins are extracted throughout the entire body by the ingested fats. Other Ayurvedic practices utilised in our health programs at Sukhavati Ayurvedic Retreat & Wellness Spa, such as daily oil massage (abhyanga), mouth swishing with oil (oil pulling), and ear oil, are also based on lipophilic-mediated detoxification.

Liver cleanse with ghee

Panchakarma is backed by science

Environmental pollutants, pesticides, and even heavy metals can get lodged or stuck in the adipose tissue (or fat) of our bodies. Conventional detox programs only eliminate water-soluble toxins and don’t get to these deep-seated toxins. Panchakarma is the only scientifically verified process to facilitate the extraction of fat-soluble toxins within the body.1

Once mobilised these deep-seated impurities can then be eliminated during the main Panchakarma detox treatment stage. The administration of the special fats and oils (mentioned earlier) also nourishes and strengthens the digestive tract, improving absorption and assimilation of nutrients in the subsequent rejuvenation stages. They also aid and support the lymphatic system (which plays a key role in reducing wastes and maintaining good immunity). This ensures that we don’t have such an overload on the liver, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Some dos and don’ts for liver cleansing at home

If you don’t have the ability, the time, or the money to do Panchakarma regularly, we recommend it be done once a year. In between Panchakarma, there are some things you can do at home to assist in maintaining your liver health. 

Safe Daily Liver Cleanse Practices

  • Limit alcohol consumption.
  • Be mindful of your exposure to environmental toxins.
  • Regular exercise promotes toxin movement and release through sweating.
  • Consumption of organic foods and safe quantities of water.
  • Intake of raw vegetable juice and potassium-rich foods.
  • Utilising safe liver support supplements like beetroot and milk thistle.
  • Yellow and orange-coloured food substances like turmeric and lemons.
  • Avoidance of refined and toxic foods.

Unsafe Daily Liver Cleanse Practices

  • Drinking excessive amounts of water, which can harm the kidneys.
  • Altering diets without consultation, especially for diabetics.
  • For individuals with existing liver disease or family history, caution is advised.
  • Excessive alcohol consumption should be avoided at all costs.
  • Self-prescribed or off-the-shelf liver cleanse products

The Ayurvedic detoxification treatment of Panchakarma supports the liver’s natural detoxification process by utilising a combination of therapies such as massage, herbal treatments, and dietary adjustments to eliminate toxins from the body (including the liver), by removing toxins, stimulating the digestive system, improving circulation, and promoting the elimination of waste products. 

By targeting the root cause of imbalances, Panchakarma aids in restoring the liver’s health and enhancing its detoxification abilities, which leads to improved digestion, energy levels, and overall health.

Sukhavati Detox Programs

The Sukhavati Wellness Retreat offers a detox wellness program at our luxury retreat in Bali to improve your health, wellbeing, and address underlying causes of illness. Call us today.

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1. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine (2002) Vol 8 (5): 40-51.

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