A combination of exercise types has the greatest effect on liver function. Start an exercise program that includes aerobic exercises such as walking outside or on a treadmill, bicycling and swimming, as well as weight-bearing exercise, such as weight training.
Exercise And It’s Effects
Aerobic exercise focuses on your cardiovascular system and has an effect on blood oxygenation. Aerobic exercise activities involve repetitive, large muscle movements that increase your heart rate and change your breathing pattern.
Weight training improves overall strength in both bones and muscles.
Maintaining bone strength as well as muscle strength is especially important for women, as liver disease often leaves bones susceptible to osteoporosis.
In addition, weight training reduces body fat, increases your lean body mass and has an effect on metabolism.
Benefits Of Exercising For Your Liver
Both types of exercise improve liver function in a number of ways.
Continued aerobic exercise strengthens your heart muscle and allows it to pump blood with less effort.
As this occurs, your pulse slows down and blood flow improves, making it easier for your heart to get blood to the liver and for your liver to send filtered blood back through your blood system.
Building lean muscle mass through weight can delay severe muscle wasting that becomes apparent during advanced stages of liver disease. Weight training prevents the buildup of excess body fat that can lead to a fatty liver and result in a medical condition called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or NASH.
Time Frame To Exercise Your Liver Out
Fatigue is a common symptom of liver disease, and you should consider this when setting exercise goals.
Each session can include 10 to 20 minutes of aerobic exercise and a few weight bearing exercises. Gradually build on this until you are exercising five or more times per week.
It is important to make sure you stay well hydrated while exercising, especially if you have chronic hepatitis B or C or are taking the prescription medication interferon.
Increasing your fluid intake from the typical recommendation of 64 oz. per day to 96 oz. per day is sufficient to keep your body and liver hydrated.
If you’re feeling pain in your liver, get tested!