to Get Rid of Fatty Liver Disease
by Loretta Lanphier, NP, CN, HHP, CH
Keeping your liver healthy and strong is one of the most
important steps you can take to maintain overall wellness. This critically
hard-working organ, which is located in the right abdominal area, has been
called the “laboratory of the body,” and for many good reasons. Researchers
estimate that the liver performs over 500 functions in the body. Some of
all food and liquids, assimilating and distributing nutrients, and
removing toxins and waste products.*Creating bile, necessary for
digestion of fats and other substances
and metabolizing fat and calories in the body Regulating hormones
Purifying the blood and removes damaged blood cells *Performing many
necessary circulatory functions
fluid levels in the body
and distributing vitamins, minerals, and other crucial nutrients
the immune system
The liver is
actively involved in keeping your body free from disease of all types. It is
also true that a poorly operating liver can contribute to a mired of
illnesses and debilitating health conditions. There are many types of liver
disease and dysfunction, but the most common and hazardous is called fatty
What is Fatty Liver Disease?
Fatty liver is also known as Non-Alcoholic Steatorrhoeic Hepatitis (NASH) or
Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD). The technical description of
fatty liver is quite complex, but basically fatty liver disease is just as
it sounds – too much fat in and around the liver. In fact, healthy liver
tissue can be displaced by unhealthy fats, and vacant spaces within the
liver are abnormally occupied by fat. In addition, those with fatty liver
disease will often accumulate excess fat surrounding the organ itself,
contributing to an overabundance of body fat in the abdominal area.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease affects as many as one in five Americans,
according to the American Liver Association. And for those with diabetes,
says VA physician-researcher Kenneth Cusi, MD, the rate may be as high as
four in five.
A healthy liver is typically reddish in color because the blood is meant to
flow through channels in the interior of the liver composed of layers of
liver cells. This is the way the liver is meant to function – as a very
efficient filter for absorbing nutrients and ridding the body of toxins. A
fatty liver becomes clogged with excess fat cells, seriously hampering the
liver’s ability to do its many vital jobs. A fatty liver loses its red color
and becomes heavier, enlarged, and greasy yellow in appearance. These
abnormalities can often be discovered by an ultrasound scan or via a liver
What Causes Fatty Liver Disease?
Some common causes of fatty liver include:
unhealthy lifestyle of poor diet (high in animal fat. preservatives, and
toxic chemicals), lack of exercise, and poor hydration.
This is probably the biggest factor in fatty liver, especially for
people over 30.
Medications. Many are very hard on the liver including pain drugs (NSAIDs
and narcotics), corticosteroids, certain antibiotics (especially
tetracycline), and others. Some causes are associated with the drug
tamoxifen (used to prevent breast cancer recurrence).
Complications of pregnancy
to toxic cleaning products, personal care products, water, food, the
occur in people affected by hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland),
high blood cholesterol and polycystic ovarian syndrome.
the harder your force your liver to work because of exposure to hazardous
substances and a high-fat, nutrient-poor diet, the greater your risk for
fatty liver as well as other types of liver dysfunction.
What Are the Symptoms and Complications of Fatty Liver?
Symptoms that may point toward fatty liver disease include:
overweight, especially around the abdomen
tenderness near the liver
liver enzymes (blood test)
Cholesterol and/or blood triglycerides (blood test)
losing weight. If you are having a difficult time taking off pounds, it
may be because your fatty liver has reverted to storing fat instead of
immune system. This can open one up to a number of autoimmune and other
fatigue. When the liver is not able to rid the body of excess fat and
other waste products, one will likely feel sluggish most of the time.
risk for diabetes. Fatty liver can result in insulin resistance, a key
factor in diabetes. A recent study estimated that about 70% of
individuals diagnosed with type-2 diabetes may also have fatty liver
X. Also known as
Metabolic Syndrome X, this condition can also be a complication of
fatty liver. Syndrome X involves a number of factors including
abnormally high blood pressure and/or insulin levels, too much
cholesterol, and excess body fat around the waistline. Metabolic
Syndrome increases risk for diabetes, stroke, and cardiac disease.
Fatty Liver Be Treated or Prevented?
Obviously, prevention is always the best medicine. Fatty liver disease is
definitely a “lifestyle” disease (in most cases) that can be prevented and
even eliminated by making healthy choices. These include:
diet composed mainly of nutrient-rich foods such as fresh, organic
fruits and vegetables, essential fatty acids and plant-based protein
pure filtered water. A well-hydrated liver is a happy liver that can
perform its many duties optimally.
Supplementation (and pure food sources) of antioxidants such as vitamins
C and natural E (containing tocopherols and tocotrienols).
supporting organic/wild-crafted herbs such as Milk Thistle seed,
Wildcrafted Chanca Piedra (helps with liver stones), Fringetree bark,
Dandelion root, Organic Nettles root and Organic Turmeric Root. There
are several reasons to use the milk thistle seed rather than silymarin
extract. Using the whole herb is recommended as often it will have a
more balanced effect. The milk thistle extract silymarin, for instance,
has proven useful in treating liver disease. However, the main drawback
to using silymarin is that, if a healthcare professional prescribes
other drugs, such as steroids, silymarin can interfere with the liver’s
ability to detoxify them. Milk thistle seed has the same healing effect
on the liver without interfering with the organ’s ability to detoxify
drugs or environmental chemicals. It also has a side benefit of
normalizing blood lipids as the liver heals. To meet the above
qualifications I recommend a product called
program of physical exercise. Exercise helps the liver to purify as well
as helps the body to effectively move toxins and wastes out of the body.
I highly recommend rebounding which helps with lymphatic drainage and
allows one to effectively lose weight.
weight. As stated above, obesity is one of the top allies of fatty liver
cleansing. Choose an effective and non-toxic liver cleanse such as
The Optimum Wellness Liver and Gallbladder Cleanse that will
effectively flush, purify and support your liver so that it can operate
at peak efficiency. There are many herbs that are great for the liver,
but they should always be either be organic or wild-crafted. Even if you
do your best to live a clean life, a yearly liver cleanse is highly
recommended, to “head off trouble at the pass,” so to speak.
Naturally restore and maintain
your vitally important liver
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Body Care Starts in the Liver
How to Do a Liver Detox and Blood
This article was originally published at
Lanphier, NP, CN, CH, HHP is a Naturopathic Practitioner, Clinical
Nutritionist, Clinical Herbalist and Holistic Health Practitioner as well as
Founder/CEO of Oasis
Advanced Wellness. As
a stage III cancer survivor since 2000, she understands the necessity of
providing the body with what it needs to repair and heal. Loretta is
dedicated to helping people create lasting changes in their health and
well-being through whole body nutritional balancing, physician strength
supplementation and up-to-date natural health education and modalities.
Loretta is Editor and contributor to the worldwide e-newsletter Advanced
Health & Wellness and
her new health and wellness blog Exhibit
Health. She is also a co-moderator of our Yahoo Health Group
focused on cancer,