Fatty liver disease: What it is and what to do about it?by Shreya S. Writer
Many may equate fatty liver disease with the problem of heavy alcohol consumption. However, one would be stunned to know that there are more than 80 million Americans who have fatty liver disease, but not due to alcohol consumption. What’s more shocking is that many of them don’t even know that they have this condition until it starts showing symptoms on their bodily functions.
This is an apt introduction for Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)
NAFLD is a collection of different liver conditions which impacts people who are not heavy drinkers (or are non-drinkers), but yet more than 5% of their liver is made up of fat cells. The steady progression of NAFLD results in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) which indicates inflammation in the liver – a precursor to substantial liver damage from scarring or cirrhosis.
Considering the huge damage NAFLD does to the liver, it is important to take certain precautionary measures and keep fatty liver disease at bay.
1 – Monitor the Weighing Scale
Keeping a close tab on the weighing scale is important as being overweight can cause different health issues. Dr Rohit Loomba, chairman of the American Liver Foundation’s National Medical Advisory Committee states that 90% of the people diagnosed with NASH are obese or overweight.
This shows how important weight control is to promote overall liver health and remain protected from issues like fatty liver disease. Maintaining an appropriate body weight decreases the amount of inflammation and injury to the liver. It also has an overall benefit for the whole body.
A person can approach an expert to understand the ideal weight and start working towards achieving that number on the weighing scale. If you are overweight then have a realistic goal like losing 4-5% of the body weight.
2 –Prepare a Routine for Daily Exercise
It is essential to engage in physical activity to keep the body healthy and keep it going for a longer period. Exercise also helps in reducing fat at the same time maintaining a proper body mass index.
Many of us may have the reason for “no time” for workouts. But just like food provides nutrients to the body, exercise to provides energy and strength to the body.
3 – Breastfeeding to Prevent Diabetes
It is important to encourage breastfeeding among lactating mothers. It can protect the woman from NAFLD by helping with two main risk factors – insulin resistance and the onset of type 2 diabetes.
Research has shown that even the newborn consuming mother’s milk will remain protected from these two risks and hence reduce the chances of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease as an adult in the later life.
This way, breastfeeding can prove to be a boon to liver health for both, the mother and the baby.
4 – Prepare a Diet Chart
One of the main causes of fatty liver diseases is improper eating habits. Junk food and other unhealthy food cause great damage to the human body and impair liver functioning.
It is best to opt for a balanced diet that includes grain, veggies, meat, fish, fruits, a little carb, and so on. Make sure to maintain a certain limit while consuming these items, as excessive eating of anything can be dangerous to the body.
6 – Avoid Medications Without Prescriptions
Before consuming any medication, it is advised to always consult a doctor. Some medications are extremely harmful to the liver; they may come with a warning that excessive consumption can lead to liver damage.
Hence, it is recommended that one should take medications only as per the drug prescribed and as per the suggested dosage. Taking note of this factor will prevent any damage to the liver
7 – Cut back on the carbs
Researchers from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden have found a direct relation between carbohydrates consumption and liver health in people afflicted with NAFLD.
Their studies showed that a mere two weeks of following a diet low in carbs brought down fat levels deposited in the liver. It also enhanced other factors that point towards optimum cardio-metabolic health.
The liver is one of the most important organs in the human body. Hence, its health is directly correlated to overall body health. It is important to have goals like losing 5% of the body weight, carrying out aerobic exercises regularly, and having a balanced diet full of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and nuts.
Such steps may look small, but go a long way in ensuring optimal liver health. When the liver is performing at its peak potential, you will also remain protected from issues like non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Liver problems like NAFLD continue impacting many of us. It is essential to keep the above pointers in mind. These 7 small diet and fitness hacks will not only help in tackling and preventing fatty liver diseases but will act as a guide to a healthier life.
Created on Nov 13th 2019 01:44. Viewed 353 times.