The #1 Danger Sign That You’re Developing Liver Disease, According To Science – Eat This, Not That
The liver is the largest organ in your body and it works hard to keep you healthy by performing over 500 essential tasks like removing toxins from your bloodstream, maintaining normal blood sugar levels and many other crucial functions. Without a healthy liver, your overall well-being is severely compromised and knowing the signs of liver damage could mean the difference between life and death. Eat this, not that! Health spoke with Dr Kimmerle Cohen, a hepatopancreatic-biliary surgeon and surgical oncology specialist with the Palm Beach Health Network Physician Group and a staff member at Good Samaritan Medical Center and Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center who explained what to know about liver disease and symptoms at to watch. Read on and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure signs you’ve already had COVID.
Dr. Cohen shares, “The liver is important for several different reasons. It works in digestion through the formation of bile, which is a fluid the body makes to digest fats. Bile allows us to digest fat and have it readily available for many bodily functions, as well as the creation of steroid hormones. The liver is also very important in the metabolism of cholesterol, as well as in the detoxification function of the blood and helps the body to filter toxic substances.
Dr. Cohen says: “Liver disease is a very serious disease that is very difficult to reverse. The best way to treat liver disease is to actually prevent it by not ingesting large amounts of calories. and fats, as well as alcohol.”
Dr Cohen says: “This condition, called jaundice, usually indicates that there is a malfunction with bile formation – which can create yellowing of the skin or eyes.”
According to Dr. Cohen, “This can be from an acute attack or an exacerbation of a chronic liver condition causing inflammation and stretching on the capsule of the liver creating pain. This can be a tricky sign because the Right upper quadrant pain can also be caused by underlying gallbladder disease or gallstones.”
Dr Cohen says: “Buildup of toxic by-products can occur when there is liver damage because they are not properly metabolized and eliminated. Ammonia can build up in the blood and cause fatigue, drowsiness and confusion.”
The Mayo Clinic states, “Liver disease does not always cause noticeable signs and symptoms. If signs and symptoms of liver disease do occur, they may include:
- Skin and eyes that appear yellowish (jaundice)
- Abdominal pain and swelling
- Swelling of the legs and ankles
- Itchy skin
- Dark urine color
- Pale stool color
- chronic fatigue
- Nausea or vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Tendency to bruise easily.”
Dr Cohen shares: “The highest risk of developing liver disease are those who have been diagnosed with cirrhosis – either from heavy drinking or abuse of alcohol, or infection with hepatitis. Alcohol and hepatitis cause inflammation of the liver which eventually leads to liver damage and potentially liver cancer. In recent years we have discovered an increase in fatty liver disease, which is an excessive amount of calories and fat in the diet. This leads to fatty deposits in the liver which can also lead to liver damage and an increased risk of liver cancer.”
“Avoiding excessive amounts of alcohol, as well as excessive calories and fat in the diet, can greatly improve your liver health,” says Dr. Cohen.
The Mayo Clinic says, “To prevent liver disease:
- Drink alcohol in moderation. For healthy adults, that means up to one drink a day for women and up to two drinks a day for men. Excessive or high-risk drinking is defined as more than eight drinks per week for women and more than 15 drinks per week for men.
- Avoid risky behaviors. Use a condom during sex. If you choose to have tattoos or piercings, be picky about cleanliness and safety when selecting a store. Ask for help if you use illicit intravenous drugs and do not share needles to inject drugs.
- To get vaccinated. If you are at increased risk of contracting hepatitis or have ever been infected with any form of the hepatitis virus, talk to your doctor about getting the hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccine. .
- Use medications wisely. Take prescription and over-the-counter medications only when needed and only in recommended doses. Do not mix drugs and alcohol. Talk to your doctor before mixing any herbal supplements or prescription or over-the-counter medications.
- Avoid contact with other people’s blood and body fluids. Hepatitis viruses can be spread through accidental needle sticks or improper cleaning of blood or body fluids.
- Keep your food safe. Wash your hands thoroughly before eating or preparing food. If you are traveling to a developing country, drink bottled water, wash your hands and brush your teeth.
- Watch out for aerosols. Be sure to use these products in a well-ventilated area and wear a mask when spraying insecticides, fungicides, paints and other toxic chemicals. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Protect your skin. When using insecticides and other toxic chemicals, wear gloves, long sleeves, a hat and a mask so that the chemicals are not absorbed through the skin.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Obesity can cause non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.”
According to the Mayo Clinic, “Liver disease has many causes.
Parasites and viruses can infect the liver, causing inflammation that reduces liver function. Viruses that cause liver damage can be spread through blood or semen, contaminated food or water, or close contact with an infected person. The most common types of liver infections are hepatitis viruses, including:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Hepatitis C
Immune system abnormality
Diseases in which your immune system attacks certain parts of your body (autoimmune) can affect your liver. Examples of autoimmune liver diseases include:
- Autoimmune hepatitis
- Primary biliary cholangitis
- Primary sclerosing cholangitis
An abnormal gene inherited from one or both of your parents can cause various substances to build up in your liver, leading to liver damage. Genetic liver diseases include:
- Wilson’s disease
- Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency
Cancer and other growths
- Liver cancer
- Bile duct cancer
- liver adenoma
Other common causes of liver disease include:
- Chronic alcohol abuse
- Accumulation of fat in the liver (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease)
- Certain prescription or over-the-counter medications
- Certain herbal compounds”
Heather Newgen has two decades of experience reporting and writing about health, fitness, entertainment and travel. Heather is currently a freelancer for several publications. Read more