On Wednesday, I showed you how obesity can cause your liver to age faster than you. This is important because of how vital your liver is for good health. Your liver works hard for you. In fact, the liver is involved in over 500 processes in the body. One of those processes is metabolizing fructose. I told you in the previous alert why it's so important to avoid overtaxing the liver with too much fructose. This is what causes the liver to age so much faster than the rest of your body. But there's even more you can be doing to protect this vital organ. One of those steps is something you may already be doing – but I want to make sure you're doing it the right way.
That step is drinking coffee. Yes, research shows that your liver likes coffee. In fact, one study found that if you drink three cups a day (regular or decaf), you're 25% less likely to have abnormal liver enzyme levels than if you don't drink any. Another study found that even two cups a day could be enough to slash your risk of death due to liver cirrhosis by 66%. Still another study found that drinking coffee every day (or almost every day) cuts your risk of developing the liver cancer hepatocellular carcinoma in half compared to never drinking coffee.
The benefits go on and on. Coffee has been linked to less severe liver fibrosis, lower levels of fat in the liver, and slower progression of hepatitis C. And your liver will benefit twice as much from coffee if you begin drinking it in the place of fructose-sweetened beverages, such as soft drinks. Instead of having an enemy to contend with, your liver will actually have an ally to help it function optimally.
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Of course, you need to make sure your coffee doesn't turn into a fructose-delivery system itself. Common table sugar is a combination of glucose and fructose. So if you load your coffee up with it, you're right back where you started. This isn't the place for heavily sweetened "coffee beverages." Just drink it black, or with a little coconut or almond milk.
You also should try to stick to organic coffee. Coffee is one of the most heavily sprayed crops in the world. Again, if you drink a cup laced with pesticides, you're adding to your liver's troubles, not easing them. If you aren't sure where the coffee in your office comes from, it's best to brew your own at home. Your liver will thank you. And if you cut back on the fructose, your waistline probably will as well.