What is Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)? Can it be cured or reversed?

NAFLD is the build-up of extra fat in the liver cell that is not caused by alcohol. There is no treatment available as of now to cure NAFLD, although diet and lifestyle changes are believed to reverse the fat build-up.

What is NAFLD?

According to the American Liver Foundation, NAFLD is the build-up of extra fat in the liver cell that is not caused by alcohol. It is normal to contain some fat. However, if more than 5-10% of the liver’s weight is fat, it is called fatty liver (steatosis). The more severe form of NAFLD is called Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH). NASH causes the liver to swell and become damaged.

Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) is the term for a range of conditions caused by a build-up of fat in the liver. It’s usually seen in people who are overweight or obese. A healthy liver should contain little or no fat. It’s estimated up to 1 in every 3 people in the UK has early stages of NAFLD, where there are small amounts of fat in their liver. Early-stage NAFLD does not usually cause any harm, but it can lead to serious liver damage, including cirrhosis, if it gets worse.

Having high levels of fat in your liver is also associated with an increased risk of serious health problems, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and kidney disease. If you already have diabetes, NAFLD increases your chance of developing heart problems. If detected and managed at an early stage, it’s possible to stop NAFLD getting worse and reduce the amount of fat in your liver.

Can NAFLD be cured?

No drugs are approved specifically to treat NAFLD. If you have NAFLD without any other medical problems, you don’t need any special treatment. But making some lifestyle changes can control or reverse the fat buildup in your liver. These may include losing weight, lowering your cholesterol and triglycerides, controlling your diabetes, avoiding alcohol, etc.

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Disclaimer
Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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