Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver. The liver can become inflamed as a result of chronic, excessive consumption of alcohol, exposure to toxic chemicals, allergic reactions, or overdoses of some prescription drugs, but it is most commonly caused by viral infection. Most cases of viral hepatitis tend to be acute, that is, they generally last for a few weeks. Chronic hepatitis is an inflammation that lasts more than six months. Please refer to the bottom of this page to find home remedies hepatitis.
At least seven different hepatitis viruses cause liver infection, so blood tests are needed for an accurate diagnosis. While some forms can be spread through casual contact, the more serious forms are transmitted primarily through infusions of tainted blood, sexual contact, and, among intravenous drug users, sharing hypodeuilic needles. Hepatitis symptoms vary widely. Initially they may include flulike complaints, such as malaise and loss of appetite. Later symptoms may include fever, nausea, sensitivity to light, vomiting, headache, swollen joints, dark urine, abdominal discomfort, and jaundice. Symptoms vary because the liver is an extremely robust organ, able to function even if large portions are destroyed.
In chronic hepatitis, the nutrients ordinarily distributed by the liver become unavailable. Low blood-sugar levels and fatigue result. Chronic hepatitis also keeps the liver from breaking down the toxins it normally removes from the body. The buildup of toxins in the bloodstream can result in depression, delirium, or loss of short-term memory. Toxic buildup also can cause jaundice, a condition in which the skin and eyes turn any color from faint yellow to bright tangerine. Frequently, however, there is no change in skin color at all.
The destructive agent in viral hepatitis is not the virus, but rather the immune system itself. As long as the virus lies dormant in the liver cells, it is undetectable to the immune system. When the virus begins to multiply, however, immune-system cells engulf and destroy the cell. Thus, the immune response destroys liver tissue and causes the most serious symptoms of hepatitis. Asymptomatic viral hepatitis may wait for months or years for a "trigger"—such as a drinking binge, or exposure to a poisonous chemical, or the use of certain prescription drugs—to manifest itself. This trigger stresses the liver and activates the infection. When that happens, symptoms appear.
Conventional treatment uses several different types of drugs. Be aware that some herbs may have a negative impact on the liver and/or interact negatively with conventional medicines. Always work with a qualified healthcare practitioner.
List of Home Remedies for Hepatitis
Artichoke increases the effectiveness of liver function.
Ayurvedic medicine has used beets to promote the regeneration of liver cells.
Burdock and dandelion are important for cleansing the liver and the bloodstream.
Studies have shown licorice to be effective in treating viral hepatitis, particularly chronic active hepatitis, due to its well-documented antiviral activity.
Caution: Do not use this herb on a daily basis for more than seven days in a row. Avoid if you have high blood pressure.
Ligustrum is an immune restorative and anti-inflammatory agent.
Milk thistle extract contains silymarin, a flavonoid that has been shown to aid in healing and rebuilding the liver. It can be taken in capsule or alcohol-free extract form. Take 200 to 400 milligrams three times daily.
Olive leaf extract is a potent antifungal agent.
Phyllanthus, an Ayurvedic herb, is useful for hepatitis B. After an initial bout with the virus, you can become symptom-free but still remain a carrier of the disease. This herb is said to eradicate carrier-status hepatitis B in some cases.
Schizandra is a Chinese herb used to protect the liver.
Scutellaria, also known as Baikal skullcap or Chinese skullcap, is a Chinese herb that is a powerful antioxidant.
Turmeric is a potent anti-inflammatory.
Other herbs beneficial for hepatitis include black radish, green tea, red clover, and yellow dock.
Eat a raw vegetable and fruit diet for two to four weeks. Start this diet with a cleansing fast. Especially when symptoms are acute, take care to replacefluids by drinking vegetable broth, diluted vegetable juices, and herbal teas.
Take 30 milligrams of zinc daily.
infected liver cells that cause cirrhosis involve an imbalance of zinc and copper, with copper in excess. Copper, an oxidant, can damage the walls of cells, and zinc displaces copper from the cells.
Take 500 to 1,000 milligrams of liver extracts daily. Over a period of three to six months, the use of liver extracts lowers liver enzyme levels.
Avoid fatty foods entirely, and limit protein intake to between 3 and 6 ounces (100 to 200 grams) a day.
Avoid stale or moldy bakery products and grains. At least in laboratory studies, the fungus byproduct aflatoxin amplifies the carcinogenic potential of hepatitis infection.
Avoid alcohol in all forms, including that found in drugs and flavorings.
If you are taking interferon for hepatitis B, make sure your doctor orders blood tests to monitor iron (ferritin) levels in your blood. Iron deficiency cuts the success rate of interferon treatment roughly in half. Your doctor will recommend treatments that can bring iron levels up to normal.
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