Detox diet won't work: liver expert

Liver experts have a message for people planning to flush the excesses of their Christmas and New Year celebrations from their systems with a detox diet: it won't work.

About 70 per cent of more than 600 people surveyed by Hepatitis Australia thought liver-cleansing diets or detox products, such as those available from pharmacies, were beneficial.

But liver-cleansing products had no proven medical benefits and can even be harmful, said Associate Professor Simone Strasser, of the Gastroenterological Society of Australia.

''Just doing a one-off detox, which people like to do around New Year, particularly, because of all the excesses of the Christmas period, has absolutely no value for the liver at all,'' she said.

Instead, people should look at their overall lifestyle habits.

Eating a balanced diet, maintaining a healthy weight and limiting alcohol consumption all year round was the key to a healthy liver. AAP