Your liver does three main things: helps digest stuff, make proteins, and gets rid of bad stuff. The reason why it's so vital is that it serves as your body's border inspection station.
We all may know that skim milk is good for your bones, fish is good for muscles, and olive oil is good for your heart. But everything we eat and drink has to be broken down into different chemicals before they can actually get to work on helping (or in the case of some foods and drinks, harming) your body. That's one of the primary jobs of the liver.
Virtually every nutrient we consume, whether it has a valid passport or not, must pass through the liver so it can be transformed into a different biochemical form. That transformation is what allows the nutrient to be used, transported to a different location in the body, or stored as an extra inch of blubbery goop on your thighs.
The various functions of the liver are carried out by the liver cells, called hepatocytes.