Liver Fat is a Serious Health Risk
Fat deposits can accumulate inside the liver ducts and block the inflow of nutrients to liver cells and simultaneously block the outflow of toxins from liver cells. This leads to a condition called fatty liver.
In the past, fatty liver was seen in alcoholics with end-stage cirrhosis and liver disease. Now it is commonplace to see the non-alcoholic fatty liver, (NAFL), variety in one out of every three American adults. Non-alcoholic fatty liver is the accumulation of fat in the liver of people who drink little or no alcohol. NAFL is common, often causes no signs and symptoms, and no complications, until it is advanced. In advanced stages there is liver inflammation and death of liver cells.
Let’s take a closer look to find out more…
Studies show that 1/3 of all Americans have imbalanced fat metabolism in the liver. Fatty liver is rarely discussed in conventional medical offices as a problem and even less in the media. Yet, the problem is epidemic. The accumulation of fat inside the liver can cause liver inflammation and decrease function. This occurs when the liver is overburdened with substances from diet or the environment, affecting its ability to efficiently detoxify itself.
Naturopathic Integrative Treatment of Fatty Liver:
Enhancing liver health requires a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and whole unprocessed food. Real, whole, organic foods from plants provide crucial compounds that assist the liver in detoxification and regeneration. Specifically, beets, artichokes, leafy greens, and cruciferous vegetables are the best at liver detoxification. Consumption of beets helps reduce fat deposits in the liver, and artichokes stimulate bile flow and are protective to liver cells. Certain herbs and nutrients can also promote liver health, including milk thistle, lecithin, N-acetyl cysteine, alpha lipoic acid, and vitamin B1 and B12.
Beneficial Lifestyle Modifications Include:
*Sustained Weight loss – with a reduction of abdominal fat
*Consistent Exercise – 20-30 minutes daily
*Proper fasting glucose levels
*Reduction of triglycerides
*Reduction of insulin resistance.
Note from Dr. P:
The liver is vital to good health and has many important jobs. Poor liver health can compromise the gall bladder resulting in gall bladder disease. Dietary and lifestyle modifications can greatly improve the function of the liver and decrease the occurrence of fatty liver. When liver cells turn to fat they are no longer functioning liver cells. If more cells die and turn to fat than cells that are functioning, the liver fails. This is a very serious and life threatening condition. Certain herbs and nutrients can help promote healthy detoxification and function of the liver.