Liver Damage from Alcohol: How Your Body Can Recover

Along with minimizing alcohol consumption and following a balanced diet, drinking lots of water can also help us detoxify the liver, optimize its functions and prevent liver damage.
Liver Damage from Alcohol: How Your Body Can Recover
Abel Verdejo

Reviewed and approved by the physical therapist Abel Verdejo.

Last update: 26 May, 2022

There is an worrying increase in instances of liver damage due to excessive alcohol consumption. The excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages has various repercussions on the body’s main systems. Above all, those that work on digestion and metabolization.

The toxic compounds in alcohol are absorbed during digestion and later filtered out by the liver to keep from impacting the quality of blood. While this organ is designed to metabolize 90% of alcohol thanks to an enzyme called dehydrogenase, its function can be compromised by an excess of toxins.

Prolonged exposure to these kinds of substances can change the liver’s cellular structure and cause problems in the digestion of fat. In turn, this damage to cells causes deterioration that over time can cause grave illnesses and impact your quality of life.

Even though it gets little attention, this organ is responsible for vital functions such as detoxification and the decomposition of fat and protein, as well as for maintaining levels of some hormones.

The good news is that there are habits and recommendations that help to protect the liver from the negative effects of these beverages and other sources of toxins.

Let’s learn about them.

1. Liver damage: watch what you eat

Healthy diet of fruit and fiber

A low-fat, balanced diet is one of the most important things to keep in mind for preventing liver damage. Diet plays a main role in the process of detoxification and may work for or against the liver’s functions.

A daily diet of food rich in water, antioxidants and vitamins stimulates the elimination of toxins and prevents cellular deterioration.

Some recommended foods are:

  • Red fruits
  • Apples
  • Green vegetables
  • Watermelon
  • Citrus fruits
  • Melon

Eating fewer processed foods and animal proteins and less red meat is also fundamental. While it is okay to eat these foods occasionally, the best thing is to refrain from eating them for a few weeks to lessen the load that this organ has to bear when it has too many toxins.

Also read: Detox Your Liver with These Natural Remedies

2. Drink More Water

Drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water a day is  essential for healthy detoxification and elimination of liquids. Like other organs, the liver needs large quantities of this liquid for optimal working conditions. It’s also the best alternative to sodas and sugared beverages that may seem hydrating but are actually another source of toxins.

3. Avoid Hydrogenated Fats

Bottle of vegetable oil

Hydrogenated oils and excess saturated fats are bad for liver health and lead to a disorder known as fatty liver. Regular consumption debilitates its functions and makes it more susceptible to alcohol and toxin damage.

They can be found in margarine and some oils such as:

  • Corn oil
  • Soy oil
  • Canola oil
  • Safflower oil

4. Take Coconut Oil

Taking a spoonful of coconut oil very day protects the liver from toxins and bacterial infections. It contains 92% medium-chain triglycerides, 6% monounsaturated fats and 2% polyunsaturated fats that provide benefits to this organ.

It also has anti-inflammatory and antibiotic properties that minimize the negative affects of alcoholic beverages, cigarettes and environmental toxins.

5. Lemon and Olive Oil Cure

Olive oil with olives

Lemon with olive oil is a traditional remedy that helps cleanse the liver and the gall bladder. It’s 100% organic, and thanks to its high antioxidant content, it promotes the elimination of waste and counteracts liver damage caused by alcohol.

You should drink this every day before breakfast along with a low-calorie healthy diet. 


  • 1 spoonful of olive oil
  • Juice of 1/4 of a lemon


  • First squeeze the juice of a quarter of a lemon, then add the spoonful of olive oil and drink immediately.
  • After a half an hour, drink a glass of lukewarm water and eat breakfast.
  • Repeat every day for three weeks.
  • Optionally, you can add strength with a minced clove of garlic.

Putting these habits into practice can minimize liver damage from alcohol after a night on the town. Of course, the benefits will only be sustained if you do your best to avoid these beverages and adopt a healthy lifestyle.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.