Monday, 4 May 2015

Obesity may overtake alcohol as a cause of liver failure

An expert has said, "Obesity will replace alcohol as the reason for most liver transplants by 2020."

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) , caused by eating more than the organ can handle, is “one of the major and growing challenges”, warned Dr Quentin Anstee, a consultant at Newcastle University, UK.

He added: “By the end of this decade, NAFLD will be the most common underlying reason why people have liver transplants, overtaking alcohol.”

With people gaining more weight than in previous generations, cases of NAFLD have been on a steady rise.

NAFLD is the build up of extra fat in liver cells that is not caused by alcohol. It is 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 condition tends to develop in people who are overweight or obese or have diabetes, high cholesterol or high triglycerides. It may also result from rapid weight loss and poor eating habits.

Over time, the liver can swell (steatohepatitis) leading to scarring (cirrhosis) and over time may even lead to liver cancer or liver failure.

So you know what to do - eat health, live healthy, stay healthy.


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