Consistent, daily walking has been shown to both improve symptoms of fatty liver disease and assist in the prevention of development of the disease as well.
Regardless of weight or body size, normally sedentary individuals who engage in daily walking lower their risk of non-alchoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) according to research out of the University of Sydney published in a recent issue of Hepatology.
The lowered risk of liver disease was a direct result of exercise and not contingent upon weight loss, illustrating once again the health benefits of exercise.
Baseline measurements were performed to determine hepatic triglyceride concentration (HTGC) and researchers noted a 21 percent reduction of HTGC within just a 4 week period.
Animal studies undertaken at the University of Missouri showed that 100 percent of the test subjects receiving daily exercise did not exhibit signs of fatty liver disease. It also showed that within one week of ceasing daily exercising, the test subjects developed fatty liver disease.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is classified as the most common cause of chronic liver disease in the United States.
While a fatty liver may not be dangerous at first it may lead to nonalcoholic steatohepatisis (NASH). Similar to alcoholic liver disease NASH can lead to permanent liver damage where the liver hardens and, over time, liver cells are replaced by scar tissue. This is commonly known as cirrhosis. Liver malfunction from NASH may lead to liver failure, liver cancer, and liver-related death. NASH is one of the leading causes of cirrhosis of the liver.
Both of these types of NAFLD are becoming more common. Up to 20% of adults may have either fatty liver or NASH due to rising rates of obesity. More than 6 million children have one of these conditions (most common in Asian and Hispanic children). Recent evidence indicates that NAFLD increases the risk of heart disease in children who are overweight or obese.
Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease:
Fatty liver disease is often difficult to detect, especially in its early stages of development. As the disease advances. typically over a period of years perhaps decades ; the following symptoms may develop:
Weight loss or loss of appetite
Confusion, impaired judgment, or trouble concentrating
Additional symptoms which may occur include:
Pain in the center or right upper part of the abdomen
An enlarged liver
Patchy, dark skin discoloration, usually on the neck or underarm area
Should you need to lose weight do so in moderation, no more than 1 or 2 pounds a week. Studies have shown that weight loss of at least 9% over a period of months can help reverse NASH. Even slower weight loss or lesser amounts than this can help lessen buildup of fat in the liver. Do not engage in drastic weight loss however as this can cause a multitude of health concerns.
Eat a balanced and healthy diet and increase your physical activity. Daily walking with a TrekDesk treadmill desk is perfect for this if weather or office environments restrict movement. In addition to limiting calories, avoid diets rich in refined, rapidly digested carbohydrates. This includes limiting foods such as white bread, white rice, and concentrated sugar.
New findings about the role of bacteria in the development of fatty liver disease may lead to still other options for treatment, such as by counteracting unbalanced diets with probiotics. These are dietary supplements containing healthy live bacteria or yeasts.