Brief summary: Your liver is one of the most important organs in your body. It’s like a super helpful organ that processes the food you eat and turns it into energy. The liver also helps clean your blood, store vitamins and even helps your body fight infections. But sometimes, things can go wrong with the liver, such as diseases or infections, and you need to take good care of it to keep it healthy.
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Location and Appearance
Where is it in Your Body?
The liver is found in the upper-right part of your abdomen. If you place your hand on the right side of your body, just under your ribcage, you’re close to where the liver sits.
What Does it Look Like?
The liver is reddish-brown and shaped like a wedge or a cone. It’s soft and smooth, and it’s the largest organ inside your body, weighing about 3 to 3.5 pounds.
Functions of the Liver
Cleans Your Blood
The liver acts like a big filter. It takes out harmful substances from your blood, such as toxins and drugs, so they don’t harm your body.
When you eat, the liver turns some of the food into a type of sugar called glucose. It stores this glucose and releases it when your body needs energy for work, exercise, and recreational activities.
Makes Proteins and Cholesterol
Proteins are the building blocks of your body. The liver makes the proteins that help your blood clot when you get a cut, and it also produces proteins that carry fats through the blood. Your liver also creates cholesterol, which helps your body to build healthy cells.
Helps Digest Food
The liver makes a liquid called bile that helps you digest fats in your food. Bile breaks down fats so your body can use them for energy and other important functions.
Your liver stores some vitamins and minerals, so you always have a backup when you need them.
How Can You Keep Your Liver Healthy?
Eat a Balanced Diet
Stay Away from Harmful Substances
Alcohol, tobacco, or too many medications can hurt your liver. So, make sure to follow the instructions of your parents, doctors, or other adults who look out for you.
Walking, jogging, dancing, or any other physical activity helps your liver work better. It’s like giving your liver a workout to keep it fit and strong.
What Can Go Wrong with the Liver?
An injury, like a hard bump to the right side of your belly, can hurt your liver. Always wear protective gear when playing sports, and be careful when you’re having fun.
Liver cancer is a serious condition that requires immediate attention from healthcare professionals.
In essence, the liver is an organ that you really can’t live without. So treat it with care, and it will help keep you healthy for a long time!
Further Reading: 8 Early Warning Signs of Liver Damage