In most western countries, eating liver is not very popular. Many people get apprehensive with the idea of eating organ meat! However, in some countries, the liver is considered one of the healthiest foods. It is also true, that he has earned a bad reputation. Most people think that the liver is the organ that eliminates toxins. And although this is true, it does not store them. Instead, it is a rich source of essential vitamins and minerals. Here are five reasons why eating liver is very good for you.
5 Nutrients in the Liver:
1. Vitamin A:
The liver is a remarkable source of vitamin A. In a serving of 85 grams, you will receive 6,582 micrograms (mcg) of retinol activity equivalents (RAE), approximately seven times more than the recommended daily value. Adult men need 900 mcg RAE and women 700 mcg RAE. Pregnant and nursing mothers need more, from 750 to 1,300 mcg SAR depending on their age. Although most of us get enough vitamin A, eating liver can keep your levels under control. This nutrient is necessary for healthy immunity, reproduction, and eye health. Even the heart, lungs and kidneys need vitamin A to function. People with cystic fibrosis have an increased risk of vitamin A deficiency. This condition damages the lungs and digestive system, making it difficult to absorb the vitamin. In fact, 15 to 40 percent of patients are deficient. If you have cystic fibrosis, consider adding liver to your diet.
2. Vitamin B2:
The liver is a great source of vitamin B2 or riboflavin. A serving of 85 grams has 2.9 milligrams (mg), which is almost double the daily recommendation of 1.3 for men and 1.1 for women. Pregnant and nursing mothers need 1.4 and 1.6 mg, respectively. In the body, vitamin B2 is necessary for proper nerve function.
“It also promotes skin health and the production of red blood cells”.
Without enough vitamin B2, you will feel fatigued and tired. Other symptoms include slow growth, digestive problems, inflammation of the throat and cracks in the corners of the mouth. Eating liver can prevent these problems. In addition, vitamin B2 is not stored in the body, so you need to get it from your diet. Other great sources of riboflavin include eggs, lean meats and kidneys.
3. Vitamin B9:
The vitamin B9 or folic acid or folate is very important for the proper functioning of the brain. You also need it for mental and emotional health. It is easy to have low levels since the body does not store it. However, with 215 mcg of folate equivalents (DFE) in a serving of 85 grams, the liver is the best source of folate. Adult men and women need 300 mcg of DFE every day. It is even more essential for pregnant and nursing women, who need 600 and 500 mcg of DFE, respectively. Folate is necessary for healthy growth and development. Getting enough during pregnancy decreases the risk of neural tube defects and other congenital problems. Alcoholics and people with inflammatory bowel disease and celiac disease should also consider eating liver. These groups have a very high risk of folate deficiency.
4. Vitamin B12:
Another reason to eat liver is its high content of vitamin B12 or cyanocobalamin. It is also needed for the production of red blood cells, a healthy central nervous system and protein metabolism. However, it cannot be obtained from plants. Animal proteins are the best source. Apart from clams, the liver is a major source of vitamin B12. A cooked serving of 85 grams is 70.7 mcg, almost 30 times more than the recommended consumption of 2.4 mcg. Pregnant women need 2.6 mcg, while nursing women need 2.8 mcg. The body does not store vitamin B12. However, consuming liver can improve your levels and prevent megaloblastic anemia. Neurological disorders will also be less likely.
The liver can help you meet your iron needs. This mineral is necessary to produce red blood cells that carry oxygen around your body. Without enough iron, problems such as anemia can develop. Symptoms include weakness, confusion and fatigue. A serving of 85 grams of cooked liver has 5 mg of iron. It will contribute to the daily recommendation of 8 mg for men and 18 mg for women. If you are pregnant, you will need 27 mg a day. If you have lost a lot of blood, iron is even more important. Women with heavy menstrual periods should consider eating liver, along with other iron-rich foods. People who donate blood often will also benefit. These nutrients are the main benefits of eating liver. But that is not all! You will also receive thiamine, biotin, vitamin E, zinc and selenium.