Preventing Fatty Liver: Four Key Points Revealed by Expert
Fighting Against an Alarming Health Crisis
Fatty liver disease, a condition wherein excessive fat accumulates in the liver, is a growing concern in China. Recent estimates from the Academic Institute of Liver Disease Prevention and Treatment indicate that the number of people suffering from this condition may reach a staggering 6 million. Left untreated, it can lead to severe complications such as liver fibrosis, cirrhosis, and even liver cancer. Recognizing the urgency to tackle this health crisis, renowned endocrinology and metabolism expert, Dr. Cai Mingjie, has outlined four crucial measures to combat fatty liver.
Four Key Points to Prevent Fatty Liver
Dr. Cai Mingjie, known for his invaluable contributions to the field, based his recommendations on the 2023 fatty liver treatment guidelines endorsed by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases. These key points are as follows:
- Weight Loss: Shedding extra pounds can alleviate the pressure on adipose tissue, ultimately improving peripheral insulin sensitivity. Even a modest weight loss of 3% to 5% can yield significant improvements in fatty liver disease. For more advanced cases like non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and cirrhosis, a weight loss of 10% or greater is recommended.
- Reducing Refined Diet: Dr. Mingjie emphasizes the detrimental effects of consuming excess calories, particularly those derived from saturated fatty acids, refined carbohydrates, and sugary drinks. Of particular concern is excessive fructose intake, which independently increases the risk of fatty liver, hepatitis, and liver fibrosis. The Mediterranean diet stands out as the recommended dietary approach, not only aiding in the reversal of fatty liver but also promoting cardiovascular health.
- Exercise: An Invaluable Ally: Regular exercise, apart from facilitating weight loss, is also beneficial for liver and heart metabolism. Dr. Mingjie advises engaging in moderate-intensity exercise for at least 150 minutes per week over a minimum of five days to prevent or combat fatty liver effectively.
- Exploring Other Treatment Methods: Bariatric surgery has shown promising outcomes, leading to a significant reduction in body weight, improved liver function, and even the resolution of diabetes and liver fibrosis. Additionally, certain studies suggest that the administration of GLP-1RA (Slimming Shot) may prove to be beneficial for fatty liver disease, although further approval is awaited for its indication.
A Multifaceted Approach
In summary, Dr. Cai Mingjie stresses the need to adopt a multifaceted approach to combat fatty liver disease effectively. This holistic strategy includes weight loss, dietary adjustments, regular exercise, and the consideration of surgery or drug treatment when necessary. It is essential to break the habit of sedentary lifestyles fueled by mindless phone scrolling and snack consumption. Abstaining from sugary drinks, reducing processed food intake, and devising a personalized exercise plan are key steps in triumphing over this debilitating condition.
Doctor Cai Mingjie cited the 2023 fatty liver treatment guidelines from the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and formulated four key points to prevent fatty liver. (Schematic diagram/Dazhi Image)
According to estimates from the Academic Institute of Liver Disease Prevention and Treatment, the number of people with fatty liver disease in China may be as high as 6 million. If left unchecked, it can lead to liver fibrosis, cirrhosis, and even liver cancer. In this regard, Cai Mingjie, an expert in endocrinology and metabolism, shared that fatty liver can be cured by four measures, including losing weight, reducing refined diet, exercising, and considering surgery or drug treatment if necessary. He appealed that lying down all day while swiping on mobile phones and eating snacks would not cure fatty liver disease. The right way is to start from different aspects such as exercise and diet as soon as possible.
Cai Mingjie posted on the Facebook fan page “Dr Cai Mingjie’s Health. Slimming” that fatty liver is caused by the accumulation of too much fat in the liver, but it not only affects the liver, but is also related associated with insulin resistance, hyperlipidemia, abdominal obesity, high blood pressure, Polycystic ovary syndrome and other metabolic abnormalities. He also cited the 2023 fatty liver treatment guidelines from the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and formulated the following four key points to prevent fatty liver:
1. Weight loss: Weight loss can reduce the pressure on adipose tissue and improve peripheral insulin sensitivity, thereby reducing the damage of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. In general, a 3% to 5% weight loss can improve fatty liver disease; weight loss of 10% or more can improve non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and cirrhosis.
2. Reduce refined diet: Too many calories in the diet, especially saturated fatty acids, refined carbohydrates, and sugary drinks, are most likely to cause obesity and fatty liver. Among them, you need to be especially careful about excessive fructose intake, which may increase the risk of fatty liver, hepatitis, and liver fibrosis, and the risk is independent of caloric intake. In terms of diet, the Mediterranean diet is the first to be recommended, which can not only cure fatty liver, but also promote cardiovascular health.
3. Exercise cannot be ignored: Exercise is good for liver and heart metabolism, and the benefits are independent of weight loss. It is recommended to perform regular moderate intensity exercise at least 5 times a week for more than 150 minutes a week to prevent or cure fatty liver.
4. Other treatment methods: Studies show that bariatric surgery can reduce body weight by up to 30%, cure diabetes, fatty liver, and liver fibrosis, and can also reduce complications and total mortality. In terms of drugs, some studies have shown that Slimming Shot (GLP-1RA) may be beneficial for fatty liver disease, but it is not yet approved for indications.
In summary, Cai Mingjie mentioned that curing fatty liver requires a multifaceted approach, including losing weight, adjusting diet, increasing exercise, and considering surgery or drug treatment when necessary. It is most taboo to lie down all day while swiping on your phone while eating snacks. You should stop sugary drinks as soon as possible, eat less processed food, and plan an exercise plan to defeat fatty liver disease.