HealthIdentifying and preventing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: the silent condition linked to diabetes

Identifying and preventing non‑alcoholic fatty liver disease: the silent condition linked to diabetes

Have you noticed these symptoms? Rush to the doctor.
Have you noticed these symptoms? Rush to the doctor.
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4:11 PM EST, January 15, 2024

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common liver disease. Initially, it does not produce visible symptoms, but over time, it can result in scar tissue formation and disrupt the liver's proper functioning, leading to cirrhosis.

About 10 percent of people with NAFLD may develop severe consequences, such as cirrhosis or liver cancer. However, an appropriate lifestyle change and regular medical supervision can prevent these harmful effects.

People who struggle with metabolic syndrome, visceral obesity, type II diabetes, dyslipidemia, and endocrine diseases (such as hypothyroidism, pituitary ailments, hypogonadism, and polycystic ovarian syndrome) or with obstructive sleep apnea should be particularly vigilant for signs of NAFLD as it often co-exists with these conditions.

Identifying two symptoms of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

There are two primary symptoms of NAFLD:

1. A dull pain in the upper right of your abdomen (above the lower right part of your ribs).

2. Abdominal swelling.

Other symptoms might include fatigue and weakness, loss of appetite and nausea, weight loss and muscle wasting, severe skin itching, yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes, hair loss, frequent nasal or gum bleeding, swelling of the legs, a tendency to bruise, and the appearance of branched blood vessels on the skin.

Preventing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

Reducing the risk of NAFLD involves maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced and nutritious diet, regular physical activity, limiting the consumption of simple sugars and saturated fats, increasing the intake of unsaturated fats, and quitting smoking.

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