Fatty liver disease: The ‘essential’ diet to avoid a scarred and faulty organ

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Every day, over 40 people die from fatty liver disease in the UK. Yet, this condition that causes inflammation and scarring in the liver is preventable. While 94 percent of Brits associate fatty liver disease with alcohol consumption, according to the British Liver Trust, an unhealthy diet is a leading factor. It is estimated that one in three people have early stage non-alcohol related fatty liver disease.

Yet, there is “good evidence” that losing 10 percent of your body weight (if obese) could help to improve the condition.

One of the best ways to achieve a healthy weight is to adhere to an “essential” balanced diet.

The charitable organisation elaborated on what an essential, well-balanced diet contains.

“The aim is to generally eat and drink healthily most of the time,” the British Liver Trust stated.

“For most people, a well-balanced diet is one that is low in fat, sugar and salt, and high in fibre, vegetables and fruit.

“Your diet should also contain enough protein and a wide range of vitamins and minerals.”

The amount of food eaten also needs to be balanced with the energy you expend.

“If you eat more than you use, your weight will increase,” the charity elaborated.

“If you eat fewer calories than your body uses you will lose weight.”

Thus, if you are currently overweight – check your body mass index (BMI) here – then it’s best to eat less and move more.

If you already have cirrhosis, which is scarring of the liver, you may need to consume more calories and protein than a healthy person of the same weight and age.

For people who have been diagnosed with advanced fatty liver disease, it is best to seek support from a dietician.

Dietary Q&A when it comes to fatty liver disease

Should I follow a fad diet to quickly shed weight?

Crash dieting is “potentially dangerous” as the results can be short-lived and difficult to maintain.

“They are generally not recommended for people with liver disease,” the British Liver Trust pointed out.

Is there a diet that can detox the liver?

This is simply not possible, as there is no current evidence that toxins build up in the liver.

Any diet promoting “liver cleansing” foods should be avoided.

Should I take herbal supplements?

Before taking any type of dietary supplement, including herbal remedies, you are strongly advised to check with your doctor that it is safe for you to do so.

“More research is needed on the use of such therapies,” the charity stated.

“As the majority of these products are not classified as medicines they are not licensed.

“This means that their production is not controlled and there is no requirement for them to undergo rigorous testing for quality or effectiveness.”

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