Most bodybuilders know that one reason oral anabolic steroids are dangerous is that they must pass through the liver. Can you say toxic? Most people know that drinking alcohol—too much and too often—can damage that organ, as in cirrhosis.
What you may not know is that your liver is your primary fat-burning organ. Nancy Desjardin, RHN, says, “Don’t even think about losing weight until you are sure that the gallbladder and liver are both clean and working as they should.”
So you don’t take oral anabolic steroids, and you don’t drink too much. You’re good, right? Maybe not. According to the July/August ’10 Well Being Journal, a study out of Duke University Medical Center found that “as many as 30 percent of adult Americans have nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, also called nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, possibly as a result of consuming too many foods and beverages containing high-fructose corn syrup.”
The article goes on to say that HFCS can cause scarring and hardening of the liver, which can lead to cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer. Yikes!
So high-fructose corn syrup is a triple whammy: You get a high-glycemic sugar load, which causes you to store bodyfat more easily; you damage your liver, which makes burning off bodyfat more difficult; and you set the stage for future liver disease and possibly even cancer. Is this stuff poison? Very close.
So read labels, and avoid high-fructose corn syrup whenever possible. Also, to help keep your liver in a nontoxic state, try taking a milk thistle supplement. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, “Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) has been used for 2,000 years as an herbal remedy for a variety of ailments, particularly liver, kidney and gall bladder problems. Several scientific studies suggest that substances in milk thistle (especially a flavonoid called silymarin) protect the liver from toxins, including certain drugs.”