Long or irregular periods can put a woman’s liver at risk – Consumer Health News

FRIDAY, March 4, 2022 (HealthDay News) — According to a new study, women with long or irregular periods are at an increased risk of contracting a serious condition called non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a chronic disease in which excess fat builds up in the liver. It affects about 24% of American adults, according to the March 3 report in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

“The results of our study show that long or irregular menstrual cycles may be associated with an increased risk of developing NAFLD, and this link was not explained by obesity,” said Dr. Seungho Ryu of the Kangbuk Samsung Hospital at Sungkyunkwan University Medical School in Seoul, South Korea.

“Previous studies have shown that long or irregular menstrual cycles are associated with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, but our study is the first to find a link between long or irregular menstrual cycles and NAFLD,” Ryu noted. in a press release.

NAFLD that is not caused by heavy alcohol consumption may progress to chronic liver damage and is associated with a higher risk of death. There are no approved drugs to treat the condition, so diet and exercise are the standard of care.

For the study, the researchers analyzed data from more than 72,000 women under the age of 40. About 28% of women had long or irregular menstrual cycles and 7% had NAFLD.

After four years of follow-up, new cases of NAFLD had been diagnosed in nearly 9% of women. The researchers concluded that there was an association between long or irregular menstrual cycles in young premenopausal women and an increased risk of NAFLD.

“Young women with long or irregular menstrual cycles may benefit from lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of NAFLD as well as other cardiometabolic diseases,” Ryu concluded.

More information

There’s more on NAFLD at the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

THE SOURCE: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolismpress release, March 3, 2022

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