It is true that fatty liver is a difficult name, but you may have heard of it by the way it is popularly known: fat in the liver. This problem is quite common , but it causes concern because it can develop into very serious conditions, such as cirrhosis and cancer.
The fat in the liver accumulates due to two factors. The first is the consumption of alcoholic beverages in excess; and the second are the habits and lifestyles inadequate, being mainly linked to physical inactivity, a poor diet, the weight gain and obesity.
Whether alcoholic or non-alcoholic liver steatosis , it is a fact that it needs treatment so that it does not cause complications in the liver, a vitally important organ. It was with this in mind that we prepared this article in order to present the ways of treating this problem. Keep reading and see how to take good care of your liver!
Check out a full post about liver cirrhosis by clicking here!
Treatments for hepatic steatosis
As we explained, hepatic steatosis may be of alcoholic origin or not. In this second case, weight gain, physical inactivity and obesity may be associated with other contributory factors :
- high cholesterol;
- bad eating habits;
- metabolic syndrome;
- sudden changes in weight;
- some medications;
- chronic inflammation of the liver.
Therefore, the treatment for fat in the liver does not follow a specific technique. It varies according to each patient , the causes of fat accumulation and the degree to which the problem is found.
There are still no drugs to reduce this fat, to protect the liver or to prevent further accumulation of fat in the organ. In general, there are four main pillars on which the treatments for this problem are based . Below we talk about each of them.
Adoption of a healthy lifestyle
The accumulation of fat in the liver is directly related to the lifestyle adopted. The excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages is one of the factors leading to the development of this problem, however, others may favor fatty liver, acting as a chain reaction.
Therefore, it is necessary that all the lifestyle is healthier, avoiding not only alcohol, but also the cigarette, the very fatty foods, sweets and those industrialized. They may not directly cause the accumulation of fat in the liver, but they lead, for example, to high cholesterol, diabetes and hypertension.
Therefore, it is necessary to analyze all the patient’s habits in order to promote changes so that his lifestyle in general is healthy. Therefore, it is something very specific and adapted for each person.
Balanced and nutritious food
This is a very important issue in the treatment of liver steatosis , as the liver participates in the digestive process in a very active way. So, what we eat affects it directly or indirectly.
We managed to promote a reduction in liver fat with changes in diet , increasing the intake of healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, among others .
At the same time, treatment should include minimizing the consumption of foods that favor fatty liver, such as processed foods, fried foods, sweets and fats. These actions are also valid to prevent steatosis.
Exercise and physical activity
The sedentary lifestyle, the overweight and obesity are the major causes of hepatic steatosis. Therefore, the routine needs to include regular exercise and physical activity in order to eliminate extra calories by controlling cholesterol and diabetes rates as well.
Don’t forget that the exercises need to be practiced in the right measure. When very sporadic, they do not promote the expected beneficial effect; however, the excess is also not good , because the training must be adequate to the person’s physical conditioning and must respect the limitations of each one, so that it does not cause harm to the body.
Therefore, the ideal is for this practice to be monitored by a specialist, and it is still interesting, first, to talk to the doctor to find out what are the best activities in your case and the correct frequency.
Although it is possible to treat fatty liver by reducing this accumulation of fat in the liver, it is important to remember that the ideal is to prevent this from happening. Therefore, adopt healthy habits, a good diet and exercise regularly, so that you will maintain the balance of your health preventing this and other problems.
Detection of fat in the liver
In general, every overweight person is at risk of accumulating fat in the liver. Generally, an abdominal ultrasound examination is able to detect steatosis, but it does not serve to quantify the fat in a precise way. For this purpose, the appropriate test that is used in more severe circumstances is liver biopsy . More modern methods, such as Fibroscan® elastography, can estimate not only the amount of fat in the liver, but also whether this fat already causes the presence of scarring in the liver, scientifically known as liver fibrosis.