Fatty liver or Hepatic Steatosis is a type of medical condition caused by the buildup of excess fat in the liver cells. This condition can cause liver inflammation which can damage the liver and create scarring which can even lead to liver failure. There are several reasons for developing a fatty liver including excessive consumption of sugar, insulin resistance, obesity and genetics. A Liver Function Test is done to diagnose the Fatty Liver disease.
Let us read out more on Fatty Liver: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment and Diet Chart
Fatty Liver Disease Stages
There are different stages of Fatty liver disease, such as:-
- Stage 1(Simple fatty liver) - It is a stage where there is a largely harmless build-up of fat in the liver cells. But, not to an extent to cause symptoms to appear.
- Stage 2 (Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis or NASH) - It occurs if the liver becomes damaged causing it to become inflamed. It is more likely to occur in people who are obese or have diabetes.
- Stage 3 (Fibrosis) - It occurs when persistent inflammation causes scar tissue around the liver and nearby blood vessels. However, the liver is still able to function normally.
- Stage 4 (Cirrhosis) - It occurs when normal liver tissues are replaced by fibrosis to the extent that the structure and function of the liver is affected. It can even lead to liver failure and cancer.
Fatty Liver Causes
There are various reasons behind why someone might develop Fatty Liver Disease. For example:-
- Malnourishment - It can lead to mitochondrial changes which can result in NAFLD.
- Obesity - Overfeeding can cause inflammation which can affect liver function. A majority of obese adults have some form of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease.
- Pre-diabetes - People who are sugar or are insulin resistant will store more fat in their liver than those who do not have pre-diabetes.
- Genetics - Certain cultural groups may be highly prone to developing fatty liver.
Signs and Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease
Most people are not even aware if they have a fatty liver until the symptoms get more intense. Here are some common signs and symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease to watch out for:
- General fatigue and feeling of fullness in the right side or center of the abdomen
- A swollen belly and visible, enlarged blood vessels under the skin
- A yellow tinge appearance to the skin and eyes
- Increased liver enzymes
- Vomiting sensation
- Moderate/severe pain in the abdomen
- Loss of appetite
Diet Chart for Fatty Liver
If you are experiencing symptoms of fatty liver, all you have to do is to reduce refined carbs and sugar and then replace those foods with more complex carbs. For example, oats, brown rice, quinoa, etc. Most doctors will recommend the Mediterranean diet. This is low in refined carbs and high in protein and includes foods that will support your liver. For example,
Coffee drinkers have been shown to exhibit less damage to their livers over time than those who do not drink coffee. Consuming 1 cup of black coffee per day is a great way to support the health of your liver.
Avocado is an unsaturated fat. Also, it is a great alternative to saturated fat products which should be avoided if you have a fatty liver.
3. Whey Protein
Consuming a whey protein shake regularly can be a great way to keep your fatty liver under control. According to the doctors, consuming a scoop of whey protein post workout is an ideal way for best assimilation.
4. Green Tea
The antioxidants present in green tea can work wonders for your liver. Special antioxidants such as catechins help to reduce liver fat as well as inflammation in people suffering from NAFLD.
5. Olive Oil
Fats like olive oil are unsaturated and promote weight-loss in people with NAFLD. Keeping a check on your weight is crucial for those who have a fatty liver.
How to Reduce Fatty Liver?
To reduce fatty liver, there are certain foods you should avoid or limit. For example, food with added sugar, fried food, salt, white bread, rice, pasta and alcohol.
Fatty Liver Treatment
In the medical field, fatty liver is currently the focus of intense research. According to the Scientists, various medications can help reduce liver inflammation. These include metformin, rosiglitazone and betaine. Another drug being investigated is Xenical, it blocks the absorption of some of the fat from your food.
To have a detailed idea and for further knowledge about Treatment and Diet Chart related fatty liver disease, you must consult the doctor. And, if you wish to undergo some test to detect the presence of fatty liver disease, you must reach out to the best diagnostic centre in your city.