Some Facts On Fatty Liver

Fatty Liver is the accumulation of excessive fat in the liver which may lead to liver inflammation and liver cell injury that can progress to Cirrhosis of the liver and possible failure of the liver. An estimated one out of five adults and one out of ten teens have non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Unfortunately there are generally no symptoms of a fatty liver and it can happen to any one of us.

The liver has several vital functions:

¯ Detoxifies and filters out bad chemicals and drugs from our blood. Produces and secretes bile which breaks down fats and assists with the digestion of food. Metabolizes (breaks down) fats, proteins and carbohydrates from our food intake.

¯ Synthesis (makes) the plasma proteins important in blood clotting.

¯ Converts glucose into glycogen, which is our body’s main source of energy.

Risk factors for fatty liver include being overweight, having diabetes and consuming a poor diet high in fat and sugars. Beginning studies are showing that even drinking one sugary beverage a day may put us at a higher risk for this disease. You do not have to be overweight to have a fatty liver. Liver specialists agree that diet is the most important factor for liver health. Drinking an excess of alcoholic beverages is also a high risk factor.

How can we avoid, slow done or even reverse an already fatty liver?

¯ Remove: TOXIC food from our diets (refined sugar, fructose corn syrup, processed foods, bad fats, excessive salt and alcohol).

¯ Add: Fresh fruits and vegetables, increase fiber, raw vegetable juice, and potassium rich foods.

¯ Increase: Physical activity and fluid intake to stay hydrated.

¯ Stop: Smoking and stop or decrease the amount of alcohol consumption.

¯ Supplement: Studies are showing that Milk Thistle is a powerful detoxifier and can rebuild liver cells and helps remove toxins from the liver. Discuss adding any supplement with your doctor before taking.

Please remember to contribute toward your OFA nutrition services if you can. These programs are not sustainable at current levels without the support of participant contributions. Be aware that Food Stamps can be used toward your contribution. Thank you for your support.

Chautauqua County Office for the Aging Senior Nutrition Program provides nutritious noon meals at several Congregate Dining Sites throughout the county along with a Restaurant Dining out Program. Our Dietitian, Cheryl Walhstrom, RD is available for nutrition counseling in your home or by phone. We also sponsor several exercise programs. Call the office for more details and information.

Call NY CONNECTS: 753-4582 for more information.

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