Fatty liver disease: eradicating the “root cause” of fatty liver disease – losing weight
In order to prevent cirrhosis (meaning scarring of the liver), you need to address the “root cause,” the British Liver Trust said, to allow the liver to repair itself. “For most people with NAFLD [non-alcoholic fatty liver disease] it means losing weight through healthy eating and physical activity, ”the charity said. The less damage the liver has suffered, the easier it is for the liver to heal and regenerate itself.
People classified as “overweight” would benefit from losing up to 10 percent of their body weight.
For example, if you weigh 14 stones (89 kg), it would help to lose 10 pounds (5 kg), which is less than one stone.
In order to lose weight in a healthy way, aim to lose between 0.5 and two pounds each week.
This means that you could potentially lose 10 pounds in five weeks, which will lead to numerous health benefits.
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“They have access to more specialist teams and will consider a range of treatments which may include medication or surgery,” the British Liver Trust said.
Tell your doctor if you have any warning signs of a scarred liver.
These symptoms include fatigue and discomfort in the upper right part of the abdomen.
In addition, any yellowing of the eyes and skin requires urgent medical attention.
Also see a doctor if you have any of the following symptoms and are overweight:
- Bruises easily
- Dark urine
- Swelling of the lower abdomen (ascites)
- Vomiting blood (haematemesis)
- Dark black tarry faeces (melena)
- Periods of confusion or poor memory (encephalopathy)
- Itchy skin (pruritus).
In addition to obesity, there are other factors that make fatty liver disease more likely.
These factors include type 2 diabetes, an underactive thyroid, high cholesterol, and insulin resistance.
In a small number of people, NAFLD is not linked to being overweight.
Under these circumstances, NAFLD is usually attributed to rare genetic diseases, prolonged fasting, rapid weight loss, starvation, or bariatric surgery.
If you want to check your risk for fatty liver disease, you can get screened by the British Liver Trust.
Besides maintaining a healthy weight and eating a varied and balanced diet, you can also protect your liver by not drinking alcohol.
Every time the liver processes a unit of alcohol, the liver cells are destroyed.