Keto Diet May Harm Liver Health, Experts Say

Around a quarter of the world’s population is predicted to be living with NAFLD – a condition that can lead to cirrhosis and liver cancer – whose prevalence is rising alongside rising obesity.

As there is no effective drug treatment for the disease, dietary and lifestyle modifications are the main prevention and treatment options.

Registered nutritionist Dr Laura Wyness points out that this means consuming a wide range of fruits, vegetables and grains, with small amounts of meat – the opposite of the increasingly popular keto diet in which meat is an important component and fat is the main source of energy.

“A healthy, balanced diet, such as a traditional Mediterranean diet, has been shown to be particularly beneficial in patients with NAFLD,”she notes.

“A diet high in fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts, moderate amounts of dairy and fish, small amounts of meat, and mostly unsaturated fats rather than saturated fats can help reduce fatty liver disease. Other habits beneficial lifestyles include regular activity, reduced or no alcohol consumption and no smoking.

Hugo Rosen, liver disease specialist and chair of medicine at USC’s Keck School of Medicine, points out that eating lots of fats and restricting carbohydrates can lead to NAFLD, according to research in mouse models. .

“But you’re essentially consuming 80% of your calorie intake as fat. It certainly makes sense that in rodents we find that causes NAFLD.”

He also recommends the Mediterranean diet, as well as the Paleo diet.

“Some data has shown that a paleo diet has a significant and persistent effect in reducing liver fat compared to a low-fat diet, simply because a low-fat diet is not acceptable to many people. people”,he said.

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