I had heard about this particular liver cleanse from a number of sources-books, websites, chat groups, etc. And I kept thinking I'd like to try it, but I needed more info. Well, recently I saw it posted on a blog (I can't remember which one) and I decided to check my library. Sure enough, it had not just one copy, but two! So I picked it up that day. It was a quick and easy read. I enjoy rereading the chemistry of cells and digestion, etc. I find it fascinating to see how different people interpret it all differently. I've learned that no one knows exactly what is going on inside the complex body. But many of them have found ways of healing that seem to work for large groups of people. So they eventually write a book about it.
The author, Andreas Moritz, had some serious issues as a child and teenager. And finally when he was 18, he decided to take his health into his own hands. He read up on a lot of eastern medicine type healing practices and eventually decided to try a liver and gallbladder cleanse. He saw such amazing results, he has done it regularly since. He also has prescribed it to his patients and has seen major healing.
He does think a relatively low-fat, vegan diet is the ultimate in healing and nourishing diets. That, I believe, is 100% false. But I just glossed over those parts and really read it to understand the science behind the cleanse as well as the details of it.
After reading the book, I'm excited to give the cleanse a try. Essentially, he has you doing it once a month until you have 2 months in a row that no stones are released. Most often it takes from 6-12 months. Less for some and longer for others of course, depending on overall health.
The WHY of a liver and gallbladder cleanse:
The liver is a decent sized organ (about 3 pounds) that does a LOT of work every second. If that work is disrupted, major health complications will appear. One of it's functions is to produce bile that among other jobs, is used to break down the food we consume for proper nourishment of the nutrients. Without it, digestion is impossible. When we eat food that is not properly broken down, it mixes with the bile and forms into stones. Eventually those stones can calcify and become hard and even more difficult to pass. The body can handle some stones and even naturally passes them if everything is in working order. But, if they are not released, they eventually fill up the liver and gallbladder. Most stones are not seen with modern technology (scans and x-rays, etc.) and are therefore overlooked as the possible cause of health issues.
If the stones get to be big enough, they start to disrupt the flow of bile, blood, toxins and all of the enzymes that are filtered through the liver. You can imagine the issues that can lead to over time. the body is resilient and can reconstruct routes for a lot of things. But only for so long.
Some of the possible symptoms from stones in the liver and gallbladder:
Food cravings, constipation, digestive disorders, difficulty breathing, hemorrhoids, brain disorders, depression, PMS, Puffy eyes/skin, scoliosis, gout, obesity, sciatica, asthma, insomnia, nightmares, Alzheimer, cancer, chronic fatigue.
The HOW of a liver and gallbladder cleanse:
I would highly suggest you read the book if you want to do the actual cleanse. He has a lot of info that I couldn't fit into here.
What you need: 1 1/2 gallons of water of apple juice
4 TBLS Epsom salt,
1/2 cup cold pressed virgin olive oil,
2/3 glass of fresh squeezed grapefruit juice or lemon and orange juice combined.
Drink 32 oz (one quart) of apple juice every day for 6 days. The malic acid softens the stones to make them easier to pass. He does have other options if you can't drink apple juice for any reason (allergies, candida, etc.).
He suggests you eat as 'vegan' as possible during the cleanse. I'm not sure if that would help during the cleanse, since I don't believe that nourishes a body. I don't think I'm going to worry about it. He also suggests that you not take vitamins or medicines of any kind if you can help it.
He suggests that you do the actual cleanse on a weekend, or when you can be home all day, as some discomfort may appear.
On the 6th day of drinking apple juice, drink the apple juice in the morning, eat lightly and only drink water after 1:30 PM.
6:00 PM Prepare a jar of 32 oz. of water mixed with 4 TBLS of epsom salt (yuck!). Drink 8 oz. of the jar at 6. He suggests drinking it with a straw or your nose pinched to bypass some of the nasty taste.
8:00 Drink 8 more ounces of the salt water
9:30 He strongly suggests you do an enema or colonic at this point.
9:45 Squeeze the citrus and mix thoroughly with the 1/2 cup of EVVO.
10:00 Drink the EVVO/juice mixture as quickly as possible and lay down immediately. He says to either lay on your back with your head propped above your abdomen. Or lie on your right side with your knees pulled toward your head. Lie perfectly still for at least 20 minutes.
6:00 AM the next morning, drink another 8 oz of salt water. He suggests you rest as much as possible, but being in an upright position helps the stones to pass more smoothly.
8:00-8:30 Drink the last 8 oz of salt water.
10-10:30 Start eating, first fruit juice, then fruit and adding more 'heavy' foods throughout the day, but still keeping it light.
He also suggests that you do a colon cleanse or enemas a few days after the cleanse, to make sure they all come out completely and don't putrefy in the colon.
He also suggest you do a kidney cleanse before or after 4 or 5 cleanses, as the kidney can get backed up. He suggests a tea to be drunk daily for a month. Or, as I intend to do, taking a tsp of epsom salt dissolved in water every morning.
So, I'm excited to give it a try. I figure, if nothing else, it can't hurt anyway! Not sure I can get the oil down, but I'll try! Seeing results would certainly help.
Since Drew smokes, and has for 15 years, I'd love to get him to do it also.
Someone posted this forum site for the cleanse also. Great resource for problem solving, etc.
Also, this blog post really encouraged me to look up the book and do the cleanse finally.
My plan is to take the 1 tsp of epsom salt in water every morning, followed by 5-20 minutes of oil pulling, for 30 days. After 24 days, I'll drink 32 oz of apple juice daily (yuck, I can't stand the stuff, but I'll try). The morning of the cleanse, if I'm really on top of things, I'd like to do an enema or 2 (I've been meaning to try that since reading about it in GAPS). I'll follow the schedule, and after 2 or 3 days, hopefully do a few enemas again. My desire is to follow this regime monthly until my liver is clean. And then annually after that.
** Update 6/25/10**
I sort of did the cleanse. I had done the epsom salt/oil pulling for a month and then drank a quart of apple juice every day for 4 days and then I had to stop as the timing wasn't working out. However, Monday I decided to just do the cleanse without the apple juice. I followed the instructions above and actually passed at least 100 very small lime green, covered with a mustard yellow, stones. It was pretty wild and exciting. :)
GRAPHIC: I had terrible diarrhea shortly after taking the first epsom salt drink and all the next day. And all I can say is 'owww!'. I know it was intentional, but I have never really had diarrhea, so I had no idea how to deal with the 'clean up process'. Sorry, gross, I know. But, if someone can learn from my mistakes, then it's worth sharing. So, for next time, I am going to simply take a quick shower after every episode so as not to cause excessive wear and tear on the more sensitive parts with the rough toilet paper. Did I mention 'owww!'?
-GRAPHIC: See here for pictures of something similar to what I had, only mine were smaller.
-I have always struggled with low blood sugar, but it had gone away most since changing my diet. However, being gone over the weekend and not eating great, it was back with a vengeance. So fasting for part of the day was rough. I was very tired Monday night, as I consumed only water after 1:30pm. I think that would have been fine if I had been eating better before the cleanse.
-The oil/OJ mix was actually quite good. I was expecting to gag on it, and I did plug my nose for half of it, but then I found it was actually kind of enjoyable. I measured 1/2 cup of EVVO into a glass measuring cup and squeezed 2 juicing oranges into it and mixed and chugged.
-I did not start off with the broth/GAPS like I intended. My husband had lunch duty and he is a wicked chef and I simply could not pass up his pork fajitas. I drank some kefir at 10 and had pork fajitas at 1. :) Along with some yogurt, kombucha and fermented beets. :)
-I intend to do this every month until I have 2 months with nothing, and then once a year hopefully.
-None of my stones were calcified or bigger then a piece of corn, and most were closer to the size of an ant. But I still have to be better off without them.
-I did not do an enema, but I really think it would be wise. I just need to find the equipment and work up the nerve.
-Tuesday and Wednesday I felt great, but Thursday afternoon I had one of my knock-out detox spells and was out for an hour and a half, dead to the world (well, to my kids at least-but thankfully we had put in a video, which I just ended up sleeping through). And today (Friday) I've been mostly laying down with extreme exhaustion. At least I've come to realize what is going on and learned not to fight my body, but to rest until it passes.
I WILL GET HEALTHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
** Update 7/15/10**
I did another cleanse, basically same as the last. Only this time no toilet paper after I started on the epsom salt, so no pain from that. I did, however, throw up in the middle of the night once, which did not happen last time. I was worried that since it was mostly oil, it wouldn't work. But apparently the oil had done it's job and it worked fine. The book said throwing up was not unusual and nothing to worry about. Once I did, I felt fine and went right back to sleep.
This time, I got at least 400 stones out, and some were the size of my thumb. So I had more, and larger ones, then last time. Still no enema. Mostly a money thing. The kids are $20 and we just don't have them .And I've not figured out a way to substitute something cheaper or free yet.
I'll do another one in August. It's pretty crazy!!!
** Update 8/1/10**
I have had back pain in my lower back for close to 10 years now. My chiropractor has been my saving grace and I'm so thankful for him! This week I knew I needed an adjustment in a bad way. But it was weird, because it didn't hurt. I could just tell that I was twisted and a mess. I wonder if getting the stones out has taken some of the pressure off of my lower back. I don't know for sure.
** Update 8/7/10**
I did my 3rd cleanse. I find the salt water harder to take and I once again threw up in the middle of the night. 4:00 actually. I slept fine most of the night, before and after. And I picked a bad time, as I had Sunday School the next morning and that was rough. Note to self, pick a morning when you can stay home and take care of business. The throwing up is no fun. I might try half as much EVVO next time. I read that the throwing up is the gall stones pushing the EVVO back into the stomach. And throwing up isn't supposed to be a problem. Other then being horribly unpleasant. I think while drinking the salt water and throwing up, that I'm definitely not doing it again. But then when I get hundreds of stones out, I can't help but assume it's helping me. Chemo makes you throw up for months, so this is much better then that option! I think I got about 400 stones out, most teeny, but about 20 of them were about the size of my thumb nail, which is big! They seem to be more green and less yellow coasted. Not sure if that is good or bad or indifferent.
Finally, I did another one. Took me long enough! When I did the GAPS intro in November, I drank a lot of really salty broth for a few days, and I found I actually passed a few green stones, and a lot of, what I believe was, broken stones. So I have felt like my liver had a cleanse since, and in a very healthy way. Plus I feel my overall diet is very healing for the liver, not too toxic and full of liver cleansing and liver building materials. But I had found myself not wanting to eat much meat for a few weeks, and my poop was very light, so I decided it was time for an actual cleanse. My husband and kids were away, so it was perfect timing. I did the usual, minus the apple juice. I got out approx 300 itty bitty stones and quite a bit of the broken ones. It was really yucky to drink the epsom water and the citrus evvo as usual. I was nauseous all night, but only slightly and it went away after I had some diarrhea in the morning. I did a coffee enema the night before, and some enemas the morning of, and one the 2nd morning. Just to make sure. But no more stones came out after the first morning. I will assume that is a good thing. I really don't currently feel like I should do another one next month, so i will play it by ear/feel and do another one when I think I need it.