Liver Function Tests

So, you’ve had a liver function test lately and you’ve been told that your ALT level is high. What does this mean? Unfortunately, it could mean that you have liver damage but your GP probably told you that!

ALT means alanine aminotransferase. It’s an enzyme in the liver and they act the same way as other enzymes – they help our bodies carry out chemical reactions so that it can function properly. ALT though is critical in filtering toxins from the blood, storing nutrients and producing bile. Inflammation or damage to the liver causes these enzymes to be released into the bloodstream, which leads to an increase in them. Our liver has the ability to restore itself but with liver damage, it becomes harder for it to do that.

You can lower your ALT levels naturally by:
– drinking coffee
– regular exercise
– losing weight
– increasing folic acid intake by eating foods naturally high in folate, such as beef liver, spinach, black eyed peas, fortified breakfast cereals, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, lettuce and avocado
– making dietary changes, such as eating more vegetables, less animal protein but more plant based protein, eating foods with lower energy density, more finer, or an increase in potassium, vitamin B6 and folic acid
– reducing high cholesterol
– staying away from medications and supplements (unless you absolutely have to have them – remember, antibiotics wipes out your entire gut bacteria, even the good ones)
– avoid alcohol, smoking and environmental toxins (use an air purifier to get rid of any unwanted toxins in the air)

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