The liver has many important tasks; for example, it is the body’s central detoxifying organ. If damaged for a long time, it can not regenerate. One of the leading causes of liver failure is alcohol consumption and abuse. But even without alcohol, we can harm sustainably with unhealthy habits of the liver.
The non-alcoholic fatty liver (short NAFL) is now a common disease. It is often unnoticed for a long time, but eventually causes diabetes or even cirrhosis of the liver. The German Liver Foundation even estimates that one in four Germans over the age of 40 is already affected. Also, every third overweight child is said to be suffering from a non-alcoholic fatty liver. The trend is rising: “Estimates assume that in the year 2025 about 55 million Americans and Europeans will suffer from non-alcoholic liver inflammation,” said the German Liver Foundation.
These three habits are especially dangerous for the detoxification organ:
1 Too much and wrong food
We feed on high calorie and eat too many carbohydrates. As a result, the body gets too much high-energy fuel, which he does not need for lack of exercise and therefore converts to fat. This happens not only in the fatty tissue but also in the liver. However, if the fat tissue is not adequately supplied with blood, again by a lack of exercise, it loses its storage capacity. The body then looks for another storage space for the excess fat – and finds it in the abdominal cavity. “That fatigates the organs stored therein,” explains ecotrophology Nicolai Worm. “First up is the liver.” However, the negative effects affect the entire body, because fat deposits in the liver are among the leading causes of type 2 diabetes mellitus.
In addition to high-fat foods, sugar-rich foods and drinks also favor a non-alcoholic fatty liver. Rarely on the menu were also Industrially heavily processed products. “Processed foods are full of fat and preservatives, which in turn can damage the liver,” warns Gastroenterologist Dr. med. Sonja Olsen of the NYU Langone Medical Center in the US magazine “Thrillist.” In addition, such foods often contain additives such as preservatives. These must be marked, they are identified by the corresponding E number, E 200 to E 290.
2 Too little exercise
We move too little, so we increase. The fat content of the body weight increases and is not only stored under the skin but also in the internal organs such as the liver. The result is inflammatory reactions in the fatty tissue, which in turn burden the body. Regular sports units can help prevent this. However, especially belly fat causes a permanent inflammatory reaction throughout the body, which gradually damages the vessels. Over the years, dangerous cardiovascular diseases can develop from all these supposed trivialities.
The liver detoxifies the body. It also means that she breaks down medication. On many leaflets, there is, therefore, an indication of possible liver damage. It should be considered whether the benefit of the drug is higher than the risk of possible liver damage. Anyone who takes medication that has this side effect, and symptoms such as fatigue, loss of appetite and upper abdominal pain, should consult a doctor.
In addition, people with existing liver damage, for example, should not take painkillers such as acetaminophen, as a high dose may already damage a healthy liver. The active ingredient is also often in combination preparations for cold or flu infections. In addition to the over-the-counter painkillers, anticoagulants, cholesterol-lowering drugs, anti-inflammatory drugs, and anti-arrhythmic agents can increase liver function and require regular monitoring, reports the “ApothekenUmschau.”
What helps against the fatty liver
There are no drugs against the NAFL; the best antidote is a diet change. It’s not about losing weight first – although a few pounds will not hurt, of course. More important for expert Nicolai Worm, however: “Less sugar, including fructose, so no juices, no smoothies, and less starchy foods.” Avoid those affected especially low-fiber and refined carbohydrates such as white flour.
To this end, the Professor of Nutrition Science at the German University for Prevention and Health Management in Saarbrücken recommends long breaks between meals. It should be at least four or five hours. Because in fatty liver patients insulin levels are much too high after eating. “The body then needs the sober hours between meals to lower the mirror again.”