After being diagnosed with a fatty liver condition (NAFLD), I always looked for natural ways to cleanse my liver, based on the idea that every little bit of help… helps.
The truth is that I am a bit skeptical when it comes to natural remedies but in some cases, I am willing to give some things a try if I consider that the worst thing they can do is them having no effect.
And one of these things is Green Tea. It is considered to help you reverse fatty liver. Now this is something that I want to try and today we’ll talk about green tea and its benefits for the liver.
We’ve already talked about the hyped milk thistle which I took for a long time during my eventually successful battle to reverse fatty liver, but there’s a new natural way – maybe even “more natural” if something like that exists – to help cleanse the liver and help it with its battle against the extra fat: Green tea!
Drinking green tea when you have a fatty liver is probably not the first dietary change that a doctor would recommend. It’s surely not the most important one either.
I didn’t knew anything about it until doing extensive research on all methods that help reversing your fatty liver and I saw that every now and then, the beneficial effects of Green Tea were mentioned.
You can imagine how pleasantly surprised I was to find out that this otherwise delicious drink might actually help those with a fatty liver!
Like many things out there regarding one’s health – including the NAFLD – there is no certainty that green tea helps your liver.
There are studies and voices that claim it does and since it is 100% natural and at most non-harmful (if not healthy), I’ve decided to give it a go and I make sure to drink a cup of green tea every day.
Unsweetened, because sugar is bad for the liver!
I haven’t stopped drinking coffee (which is also considered good for fatty liver), but I consider that green tea adds some welcome variety to our otherwise limited beverage options.
And I strongly recommend you do the same unless you are not allowed to have caffeine in your diet (for example, if you have high blood pressure).
Why should people with fatty liver drink green tea?
A study conducted in 2008 found out that mice suffering from a fatty liver who were on a treatment based on the amino-acid EGCG – which is found in green tea – after 4 weeks of treatment showed reduced inflammation of the liver and reversed the condition.
Even better, those on a longer treatment – 16 weeks – continued to show progress and had reduced body weight gain and fat percentages, proving to the scientists that green tea can provide long term health benefits.
It’s true that this study has been made on mice only, but this is how most studies begin. All lab studies start on mice, and even though we still need conclusions made after humans consume it, I am still happy and encouraged by the results.
Plus, we have no less than 10 studies conducted on the matter in the US and China. A whooping 8 of them concluded that green tea has a protective role over various liver diseases and the “studies showed a positive correlation between green tea intake and attenuation of liver disease” (Source here)
A few months after being diagnosed I found out about the benefits of drinking green tea for fatty liver and I had a period of maybe a couple of month (or more) when I drank a cup each day.
While consistency dropped from daily as summer came (and it was too hot for warm tea), I kept drinking it as often as I could and I still have it almost daily during the colder months.
I managed to reverse my fatty liver during this time and I can’t help but wonder if Green Tea had any role in that. But at the very least, it surely didn’t do any harm!
Green tea has long been praised for its plethora of antioxidants and for its general health benefit and I tend to believe that there’s at least a bit of truth out there for this statement.
It might not be the main thing when it comes to reversing fatty liver, but at least you’re trying out something new – something that might be the cure of your problem, without risking any side effects (note that green tea does have caffeine, so if you suffer from hypertension or you’re already drinking a lot of coffee, add it to your daily caffeine intake to keep numbers under control).
So why not give it a try? It’s extremely easy to add green tea to your diet.
How to drink green tea for fatty liver
The general rules of thumb when it comes to a regular diet for NAFLD apply in the case of green tea as well.
This means that you should not drink it sweetened (compared to coffee, I found it extremely easy to drink this one without any added honey or sweeteners). This is the main and most important rule.
If you like to add a bit of milk to your tea, I believe that you still can do this, but make sure to use milk that is low in fat (1.5% or less) or any other milk substitute that is natural and without any chemicals.
Finally, you can add a variety of flavors to it if you want to change the taste: I personally prefer it with mint (when I have them, I use fresh mint leaves, but you can even get a green tea & mint combination), squeeze some lemon in it or add any other natural leaves or juices to it – but in small quantities.
If you want to drink it cold, you can prepare it in just a bit of warm water, then add cold water on top (or ice). Refreshing and nice for a hot summer’s day – this is what I plan to drink when the weather gets warm again!
All in all, you have a lot of options when it comes to drinking green tea, which definitely beats the repetitiveness of the regular plain water (or maybe lemon water) that we all drink on a daily basis now.
What green tea is best for you?
To be honest, I think that you can choose absolutely any type of green tea and it will be just as healthy and tasty, as long as it has a well known brand behind it.
But there are voices claiming that non-organic tea can have a lot of pesticides, which would be unhealthy especially for our already suffering livers.
So it seems that if you want to make sure that you are getting the best possible green tea and reduce the intake of chemicals (like pesticides) to a minimum, going for an Organic option is your best bet.
I don’t always go this route and instead I choose renowned brands whose promise for clean and natural products I believe.
If you still can’t decide, I can recommend my favorite which can be bought online – Twinnings Green Tea (affiliate link). Or you can go 100% safe and search for an organic green tea (affiliate link also). In all honesty, any would be just as good.
As I said, the worst thing that could happen if you drink green tea with a fatty liver is it having absolutely no health benefits at all, but without doing any type of harm.
However, I would consider the studies made over the years – both on humans and mice – pretty encouraging, since they all conclude that green tea indeed helps the liver.
As a result, I don’t think there would be any harm – on the contrary! – if you start drinking a cup of green tea each day.