As one of the leading causes of chronic liver injury, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease affects about 20 to 40 percent of American population. Even though this condition is quite common, most people don’t realize that they have fatty liver disease because they often minimal or no symptoms. The only way to discover it is to have testing done, e.g. an ultrasound or CT scan.
What Is Fatty Liver Disease?
There is a strong link between fatty liver disease and other pathological conditions, including cardiovascular diseases, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, or obesity. There are two types of fatty liver disease: non-alcoholic and alcoholic. Both are often associated with fatigue or slight pain in the upper right portion of the abdomen. Fatty liver disease is the result of extra fat that has accumulated in the liver. While it is normal for the liver to contain some fat, a person with fat buildup of 5 to 15 percent of the liver’s total weight is considered to have fatty liver disease. The amount of fat in the liver will determine the severity of the disease and whether or not someone experiences symptoms.
Non-alcoholic Vs. Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Whether someone consumes alcohol or not, fat can slowly start to build up in the liver. The only difference between non-alcoholic and alcoholic fatty liver disease is that the buildup of fat in the liver in a non-alcoholic case is not the result of alcohol consumption. How the fat accumulates, however, is not dissimilar to how fat accumulates in alcoholic fatty liver disease. The regular consumption of large amounts of alcohol is directly linked to increased fat buildup in the liver.
There are currently two primary categories for naturally remedying fatty liver disease: pharmaceutical therapies and lifestyle interventions (e.g. physical exercise, dietary modification, and weight reduction). Recent studies have emerged about the benefits of lifestyle interventions for people with fatty liver disease. Five great dietary tips are listed below.
Foods To Avoid
There are certain foods you should avoid when trying to improve the health of your liver. Alcohol is the number one thing you should avoid, especially if you have alcoholic fatty liver disease. It is integral to avoid excess caffeine, packaged foods, refined sugars, artificial ingredients, refined grains, uncooked shellfish, certain medications, or fruits/vegetables that are sprayed with herbicides and pesticides. The National Institute of Health also provides a database, which details whether or not any medication, supplement, food or herb may be linked to improper liver function.
Within the past ten years, researchers have published over 10,000 papers on the anti-inflammatory, chemopreventive, and antioxidant effects of silybin and silymarin, derivatives of the milk thistle plant. Consumption of milk thistle has also been linked to the production of enzymes, which help the liver eliminate toxins. Additionally, the antioxidant effects of milk thistle may reduce oxidative stress and modulate metabolic pathways.
Foods That Boost Liver Function
It is wise to consume lots of plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats, primarily because many of these foods work to boost liver health. Many liver-boosting foods have been known to decrease inflammation, while aiding the body with insulin production, a common problem for those with fatty liver disease. Great foods to boost your liver include artichokes, bitter leafy greens (mustard greens, arugula, & dandelion greens), green tea, avocados, flaxseeds, walnuts, chia seeds, and foods that are rich in vitamin E.
Cleanse Your Body
Sometimes you need to hit the reset button, especially when you consider that we are frequently exposed to toxins, pollutants, and harmful chemicals that can damage the human body. Exposure to industrial chemicals, preservatives, pesticides, and certain medications can impair liver function and contribute to fatty liver disease. You can try the Dherbs Full Body Cleanse and then follow it up with our 10-day Liver Cleanse to address the condition.
The use of garlic as an herbal remedy dates back 6,000 years to various civilizations in Asia, the Mediterranean, and Egypt. Recent studies, however, have found that raw garlic works to improve insulin resistance, lipid metabolism, and helps to fight oxidative stress. The enzymes in garlic may even possess liver regenerative abilities, but more research needs to be done on that matter. As for now, garlic is a beneficial food to include in your diet if you suffer from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.