Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the build up of too much fat stored in the liver cells that is not caused by alcohol.
According to the Liver Foundation, it’s normal for the liver to contain some fat. However, if more than 5% – 10% percent of the liver’s weight is fat, then it is called a fatty liver (steatosis).
The more severe form of NAFLD is called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). NASH causes the liver to swell and may progress to advanced scarring (cirrhosis) and liver failure, very similar to the damage caused by heavy alcohol use.
Becoming the norm?
Sadly, NAFLD is becoming increasingly common, especially in the United States. About 100 million Americans are estimated to be afflicted….
...as well as the kiddos. NAFLD is the most common form of liver disease in children, and has more than DOUBLED over the past 20 years.
Risk factors for NAFLD include obesity, insulin resistance, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, and hypothyroidism, amongst others.
Diets with higher intakes of fats, oils, meat, dairy, and animal protein in general, are associated with higher liver enzymes; and fat intake, particularly saturated fat, significantly increases the risk of both NAFLD and NASH.
And it turns out that excess sugar plays a role too, as explained in this short video by Dr. Michael Greger.
What can be done?
Weight loss, while eating a low-fat, high fiber, plant-based diet, can be an effective treatment for NAFLD. Studies have shown that such diets are effective for addressing the underlying conditions that lead to NAFLD.
I’d love to help you get started with eating the right foods….no deprivation, no lack of comfort foods, no lack of flavor, no calorie counting, and no going hungry!
When you’re ready, I’m ready. Watch this free webinar and then book a chat with me. No strings attached, I promise.
Angela Fischetti says
First off I would like to say that everyone reading this column should do themselves a great favor and watch your free wonderful webinar, Cyd. I have done so and I am glad I did. It is comprehensive in its material content and details which is not always true of a free webinar. Secondly, thank you for this post. It is growing more concerning to me as to what is becoming acceptable as the norm. Let’s make no mistake about it folks, common and normal are quite different but in the spirit of Dr. McDougall, with people wanting to hear good news about their bad habits, it’s no wonder the word normal or norm is being evoked so readily. My other suggestion would be for people to work with you, Cyd, to get a much better handle on NAFLD and from what I’ve learned from your extraordinary teachings regarding inflammation, this, too, will be lowered. Our diet seems like a win-win from every aspect. Thank you for your efforts on our behalf!
Cyd Notter says
Thanks SO much for your comment, Angela! I totally agree with your assessment of the words ‘common’ and ‘normal.’ Although unhealthy eating is quite common in our society, none of us should strive to be normal in a country where the majority of people are struggling with weight and health issues. Hopefully our continued message that there IS A SOLUTION will keep resounding! PS: Everyone, please check out Angela’s website as well. She’s a top-notch fitness and yoga instructor who specializes in older clients. During one of my recent Inflammation Support Group meetings, Angela came on as a guest and demonstrated some practical, effective exercise strategies that would benefit anyone, regardless of how active they currently are. She CARES about her clients and is the real deal 🙂 http://www.boomerandbeyondwellness.com