Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) or non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) affects nearly 10% of children in the US, aged from 2 to 19 years old. The condition has become more common in children over recent decades, partly due to an increase in childhood obesity. Parents and families have an important role in not just spotting signs of fatty liver disease in their children, but in addressing lifestyle and dietary changes in their family to help reduce their child’s risk of developing the condition.
Fatty Liver Disease In ChildrenRead more
An article by Jackie
image credit My Fit Station
There are no medical treatments for non-alcoholic related fatty liver disease, according to the American Liver Foundation – indicating the extent to which a healthy diet and exercise are key to preventing or reversing early-stage fatty liver disease. Far from having to excessively count calories or otherwise follow an intensely strict dietary regimen, people with fatty liver disease can progress significantly by embracing a nutritious, delicious Mediterranean diet. Known as ‘the heart-healthy diet’, it is also rich in healthy Omega-3 essential fatty acids and low in refined sugars, and can be a nutritious tool against fatty liver disease.
Why The Mediterranean Diet?
Do you know what the simplest diet advice that can actually work is?
Don't eat anything white
Can't be you say? Think of it this way.
Don't eat sugar, salt, refined grains, rice, or potatoes for starters
If you do this, you will likely find that the choices you make will automatically be healthier than your current diet and for most people it will lead to weight loss and better health.
There are a lot more detailed discussions on the site which you can explore.
If you think about the co-morbidity illustrated in this image, it is clear that there are at least 40 million Americans who are at some level of risk for developing advanced disease. The question, "WHAT TO DO" hangs there in the face of vast suffering to come.
Studies are coming in as research focuses on liver disease and the challenges that we face. A whole body view instead of organ by organ is becoming more common which recognizes that the liver is so foundational to health that a very wide range of diseases are co-morbid with liver disease. That is a fancy word that means the problems are related.
Clinical trials are important. We support them because they are the only way to get treatments that work. I recently took 5 members of my family to Dr. Rohit Loomba's, a world renown liver specialist, lab at the University of California San Diego where we participated in a study seeking a genetic basis for familial liver disease. The goal is the find out what role DNA plays in the development of liver disease. If you are interested in learning more, click on the link below. If your family seems to have liver disease you might check it out.
The four horsemen of the apocalypse. The vision of death and destruction for humanity from the new testament is a chorus of the woes that can befall society. It evokes hazard from all directions bringing misery and the pale horse called death.
When you come to grips with the health aspects of liver disease it is a surprise to learn that our understanding of our bodies as an integrated system is so poorly appreciated. The mix of chemical processes that are done routinely by the liver cannot be duplicated by our chemists. It is estimated that over 500 functions are performed by the cells of the liver and they affect every other kind of tissue in the body. Imagine that, all of that activity in a cell about one fifth the width of a human hair.Read more
Exercise as a patient is a popular subject which reminded me of a recent experience. If you have ever been a runner you likely know of what is called the "runners high". It is a feeling of euphoria brought on by the release of endorphins. Running is mostly hard work but occasionally it is magic.
There is a greenbelt along the river where I live that bikers and pedestrians enjoy. It is really quite a nice amenity. It is local custom for bikers to signal with a bell perhaps or more commonly to announce "on your left" when passing to avoid startling walkers.
I was jogging along recently and it was a perfect day. A gorgeous morning and I felt good. As I went along everything came together. I was the winged god Mercury floating effortlessly through space with the wind and gravity paying me hardly any mind as I flew past. A glorious experience that I would gladly become addicted to. I could have run all day with no effort at all.
This is an overview of our site. Liver disease is complex and we invite you to study it but if all you want is a quick summary the site probably isn't for you
I was shocked to learn I am a cirrhosis patient and because of that I became a patient advocate. I decided the best way to have a voice was to create a non-profit foundation. If you are here, you or someone you care about, is obese, is ill, has or is at risk for liver disease or a co-morbidity associated with it. Obesity is a major cause of the problems. You won’t care about this topic except as a health or diet issue.
This is what you will find here:
- Non-technical explanation of how your body actually works
- How the liver develops disease over time
- Why fats are a critical source of fuel for your cells
- How the liver manages triglycerides
- How the course of fatty liver disease depends on triglycerides and carbohydrates
- How the kind of dietary fat you use matters
- Information by a liver patient for liver patients
- Information about diet based upon bio-chemistry not fads
This site is not trying to sell you anything.
We are a nonprofit foundation and we do not represent anyone but the patient. If you are looking for advice on supplements or quick fixes this is not the place for you. We offer extensive information about the body in general, the liver specifically, and we recommend lifestyle strategies that have worked for me specifically and which I believe are valuable for anyone concerned about liver health to be familiar with. The strategies are also the best we know of for weight control and management. If you struggle with weight you need to understand how the body works rather than just buy expensive stuff from the guru of the month. Our goal is to help you understand the problem so that you can deal with it effectively.
This site offers you extensive opportunity to add your own comments and experiences to the pages. We invite you to add your own thoughts if you would like to. Patient and caregivers stories are especially helpful to other sufferers.
Saturated Fat Is More Metabolically Harmful for the Human Liver Than Unsaturated Fat or Simple Sugars.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (i.e., increased intrahepatic triglyceride [IHTG] content), predisposes to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Adipose tissue lipolysis and hepatic de novo lipogenesis (DNL) are the main pathways contributing to IHTG. We hypothesized that dietary macronutrient composition influences the pathways, mediators, and magnitude of weight gain-induced changes in IHTG.
Overfeeding saturated fats increased liver triglycerides more (+55%) than unsaturated fats (+15%, P < 0.05). Carbohydrate feeding increased liver triglycerides (+33%) by stimulating DNL (+98%). Saturated fat significantly increased while unsaturated fat decreased lipolysis. Saturated fat induced insulin resistance and endotoxemia and significantly increased multiple plasma ceramides. The diets had distinct effects on adipose tissue gene expression.
Macronutrient composition of excess energy influences pathways of liver triglycerides: Carbohydrates increases DNL, while saturated fat increases and unsaturated fat decreases lipolysis. Saturated fat induced the greatest increase in triglycerides, insulin resistance, and harmful ceramides. Decreased intakes of saturated fat could be beneficial in reducing liver triglycerides and the associated risk of diabetes.
Overfeeding polyunsaturated and saturated fat causes distinct effects on liver and visceral fat accumulation in humans
The importance of dietary fat composition for fat storage in humans is unknown. We investigated liver fat accumulation and body composition during overfeeding saturated fatty acids or polyunsaturated fatty acids Thirty-nine young and normal-weight individuals were overfed muffins high in palm oil or sunflower oil for 7 weeks. Liver fat, visceral adipose tissue, abdominal subcutaneous adipose tissue, total adipose tissue, pancreatic fat, and lean tissue were assessed by magnetic resonance imaging. Both groups gained similar weight. Saturated fats, however, markedly increased liver fat compared with unsaturated fats and caused a twofold larger increase in visceral fat than poly unsaturated fats. Conversely, poly unsaturated fats caused a nearly threefold larger increase in lean tissue than saturated fats. Genes involved in regulating energy dissipation, insulin resistance, body composition, and fat-cell differentiation saturated fats were differentially regulated between diets. In conclusion, overeating saturated fats promotes hepatic and visceral fat storage, whereas excess energy from poly unsaturated fats may instead promote lean tissue in healthy humans
We start with the fact that the fundamental problem is the bio-chemical flow between the liver and fat cells. When diet is poorly balanced, over time fat accumulates in the liver and by itself is rather benign but when other chemistries like insulin management begin to degrade you get inflammation which leads to fibrosis and if not stopped progresses to cirrhosis. Since there is no treatment your tool is diet and the question is to avoid anything that stresses the liver and load up on anything that is protective. Easy peasy right. Well let's take a look
- eliminate all alcohol
- eliminate saturated fat and no red meat
- eliminate all non skim dairy products
- eliminate trans-fat and all hydrogenated oils
- eliminate all high fructose corn syrup
- eliminate most sodium -- the goal 1,500 mg per day
- eliminate all added dietary sugar
- eliminate processed grains, no white flour or white rice
- Avoid most products hustled by the supplement industry
- Make sure that any medications you take are not harming your liver
The goal of this website is to share my experiences and information as I seek to use nutrition and a health supportive lifestyle to manage my liver disease. I have to tell you the legal things because our society is riddled with lawyers. Please go to the link above to see the full statement. By using this site, you signify your assent to these Terms and Conditions. If you do not agree to all of the Terms and Conditions of use, do not use this site.
OK, I get it, but what kind of diet can meet all those goals?