Are your meds killing your liver?
They say the nose knows, but that's not always true.
Cookies are terrible for you, but they smell great. And one of the healthiest foods in the world -- natto, a fermented bean product from Japan -- smells so bad it can make you gag.
So, forget the nose.
If I had to rely on only one part of the body to REALLY "know" what's going on, it would be the liver.
It works 24 hours a day to sort the good from the bad, filtering toxins out of your blood -- and it has no margin for error.
Yes, your liver absolutely knows good from bad -- and your liver absolutely HATES many of today's most common medications!
New research shows that drugs taken daily by hundreds of millions of Americans -- including medications you might be taking right now -- can cause your liver so much stress that it can literally start to fall apart.
The study names 1,000 drugs that your liver knows are toxic.
When you take these meds, your liver tries to protect you from them by filtering the worst of it out of your blood.
But in trying to save you, it often sacrifices itself.
At the top of the list is a drug we all know all too well: acetaminophen.
The main ingredient in Tylenol is the nation's leading cause of acute liver failure, as many people don't realize that popping some extra painkillers can damage the organ.
Acetaminophen is also in dozens of other drugs, from sleep aids to cold remedies, so read all labels carefully.
It's a lot easier to overdose than you'd think.
But it's not just acetaminophen.
Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs can cause inflammation in your liver, and the proton pump inhibitors millions of people think they need to control acid reflux can damage the organ and, in some cases, may even cause liver failure.
Certain antibiotics and antivirals, cancer meds, and more can also hit you hard in the liver.
Any one of these drugs on its own can do some damage.
But I'll bet you don't know too many people taking only one med.
Millions of Americans, especially older folks, take drugs by the fistful, including SEVERAL meds known to damage the liver -- and all at once.
As a result, the new study finds that 1 in 1,000 patients suffer from liver damage due to their meds -- a staggering number that could add up to hundreds of thousands of Americans.
And if you ask me, that estimate might be a little on the low side.
Fortunately, the most common meds that cause liver injury are rarely necessary. You can avoid them completely -- Tylenol, statins, PPIs, and more -- by working closely with a holistic medical doctor who can get you onto safe and natural alternatives.
And if you're in the San Diego area, I can help. Make an appointment to see me here at the Stengler Center for Integrative Medicine.
Not in the area? I'm also available for advice by phone. Call 855-DOC-MARK to schedule a consultation.
And don't forget to connect with me on Facebook!