Fatty Liver Disease. Could Keto Be The Cure?

Fatty liver disease is a condition that can affect people of all ages. It’s especially common among people who are overweight or obese, but it also affects those with type 2 diabetes and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Fatty liver disease is also known as nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) because it involves the accumulation of fats (lipids) in the liver, with inflammation and damage to the hepatocytes – the cells that make up the majority of the liver. Fatty liver disease often progresses to scarring in later stages of this condition, a process known as fibrosis. If left untreated, NASH can cause serious problems such as inflammation of the bile ducts and an increased risk of hepatocellular carcinoma – a type of cancer that develops from hepatocytes. With so many people struggling to manage their weight, fatty liver disease is becoming more prevalent every day. Read on to discover more about fatty liver disease and its potential links to ketogenic dieting…

What is Fatty Liver Disease?

Fatty liver disease is a condition that leads to the accumulation of fats (lipids) in the liver. These fats are metabolized by the liver, which causes inflammation and damage to the cells. This often progresses to fibrosis in later stages of the condition. The liver is an organ that performs a variety of different functions. Due to its large size and wide range of responsibilities, the liver is highly susceptible to damage from a variety of different sources. As a person ages, the risk for developing fatty liver disease increases. However, even younger people can be affected by this condition. A person’s lifestyle choices can have a direct effect on whether or not they develop fatty liver disease. Certain diet and exercise habits can increase the risk for developing fatty liver disease.

How does Fatty Liver Develop?

Fatty liver disease develops as a result of an excessive buildup of fat in the liver. The liver is responsible for metabolizing dietary fats and other lipids. When the liver is processing a high volume of fats, it leaves less capacity for other metabolic processes. The buildup of fats in the liver leads to inflammation and damage to the hepatocytes – the cells that make up the majority of the liver. This is the first step in the progression of this condition, which can eventually lead to fibrosis. A healthy liver maintains a balanced level of fat through a process called lipogenesis and lipolysis. When lipogenesis increases, more fats are stored in the liver. When lipolysis decreases, fats are released and transported out of the liver. As a person ages, the liver becomes less efficient at releasing fat into the bloodstream. This is due to a lower rate of lipolysis, and a higher rate of lipogenesis.

The Warning Signs of Fatty Liver Disease

Fatty liver disease is often asymptomatic and diagnosed incidentally during the course of other medical procedures. The most common warning sign of fatty liver disease is an abnormal liver enzyme test result. In some cases, the doctor may detect a build-up of fat in the liver on an imaging scan. There are other warning signs that you should be aware of as well, such as: – An elevated level of aminotransferase – an enzyme that indicates liver damage – An enlarged liver on an imaging scan – Dark areas on the liver – called liver steatosis – that appear on a liver biopsy

How Keto Dieting Helps with Fatty Liver Disease

The exact mechanisms behind the beneficial effects of ketogenic dieting on the liver have yet to be fully understood. However, there are several possible explanations behind this phenomenon. Some scientists believe that ketogenic dieting triggers the production of ketones, which are substances that can be metabolized by the liver instead of fats. That would help the liver reduce its reliance on fat metabolism, which would reduce the risk of fatty liver disease. Another possible explanation is that ketogenic dieting increases the metabolic rate, which would help to break down fats more quickly. Others believe that ketogenic dieting improves the functioning of the mitochondria, the energy-producing organs in the cells.

Bottom Line

The potential links between ketogenic dieting and fatty liver disease are a source of much debate in the medical community. While there is evidence to suggest that a ketogenic diet could help to prevent or treat fatty liver disease, more research is needed. If you have been diagnosed with fatty liver disease, you should speak to a doctor about the best course of treatment for your condition. If you are at risk for or have symptoms of fatty liver disease, it is important to make lifestyle changes to reduce your risk of further complications. This includes eating a healthy keto diet, getting enough exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight.

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Additional Resources > https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatty_liver_disease

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