Reverse Fatty Liver Disease: Vitamins, Supplements and Foods For You To Try

Fatty liver disease is a chronic liver condition that can negatively impact your quality of life. The good news – there are many vitamins, supplements and foods for you to incorporate into your daily life to improve the disease. 


Medically Reviewed by Dr. K on 17 Dec 2021.

Reverse Fatty Liver Disease: Vitamins, Supplements and Foods For You To Try

The standard treatment for fatty liver disease, whether caused by alcohol or not, is to lose weight and exercise regularly. So, how about it? What should you eat?

Foods that fight cell damage, make insulin usage simpler for your body, or reduce inflammation may help cure the disease.

Because each individual is unique, you should consult with your doctor to develop an eating plan that is good for you.

Foods That Help Fatty Liver Disease

Take a look at the Mediterranean diet. Even though it wasn’t designed for persons with fatty liver disease, this way of eating incorporates items that aid in reducing fat in the liver, such as healthy fats, antioxidants, and complex carbs.

The following are some of the items on the table that you should grab:

  • Seafood and fish
  • Fruits
  • Grain (whole)
  • Nuts
  • Olive oil
  • Vegetables
  • Avocados
  • Legumes

Choose the Right Fats

Your cells get their energy from glucose, a kind of sugar. Insulin aids in the transport of glucose from digested food into your cells.

Insulin resistance is quite common in those with fatty liver disease. That implies your body produces insulin but is unable to use it properly. Glucose builds up in your bloodstream, where it is converted to fat by your liver.

Certain fats in your diet may improve the way your body uses insulin. This means your cells can absorb glucose, and your liver won’t have to produce or retain fat.

More of these are available:

  • Fish, fish oil, vegetable oils, nuts (particularly walnuts), flaxseeds and flaxseed oil, and leafy vegetables contain Omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Monounsaturated fats may be found in olives, nuts, and avocados, among other plant sources.

Fatty Liver Foods to Avoid

Avoid saturated fats, which cause your liver to accumulate more fatty deposits. This includes the following:

  • Except for lean white meat, poultry
  • Cheese with a high-fat content
  • Except for low-fat yoghurt
  • Red meat
  • Using palm or coconut oil in baked items and fried dishes.
  • Candy, ordinary soda, and other foods with added sugars, such as high-fructose corn syrup, are rich in sugar.

Antioxidants and Supplements for Liver Health

When nutrients aren’t broken down correctly, they cause harm to cells. This may cause fat to accumulate in your liver. Antioxidants, on the other hand, may help protect cells from damage. Here’s what you can consume:

  • A cup of coffee
  • Green tea
  • Garlic 
  • Fruits, particularly berries, are high in antioxidants.
  • Vegetables
  • Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant. It may be found in the following places:
    • Sunflower seeds
    • Almonds
    • Liquid plant-based oils with monounsaturated fats, like olive or canola oil.

Scientists are studying supplements to determine whether they may help your liver:

  • Goji berry (wolfberry), a Chinese medicinal plant, may help you lose weight. However, further study is required to determine whether or not this is correct.
  • Resveratrol, a compound found in the skin of red grapes, may aid in the reduction of inflammation. According to conflicting research, how well it works is dependent on how much you consume.
  • Selenium is a mineral found in Brazil nuts, tuna, and oysters, among other things. (Most individuals eat enough to meet their nutritional needs.)
  • Milk thistle. It’s also known as silymarin, which is the primary ingredient in its seeds. The evidence is conflicting as to whether it works.
  • Berberine, a Chinese medicinal plant. It seems to aid with cholesterol, liver function, and blood sugar management in early investigations. However, additional study is needed to establish whether it helps.

Before using any supplements, consult your doctor. They may interfere with the effectiveness of your medications or create other health issues. If you don’t take the proper quantity in the appropriate method, they may not be effective.

source - istock

Get Your Vitamins and Minerals

Make a place in your diet for the following foods:

  • Vitamin D. Low levels may contribute to the progression of fatty liver disease. When you’re outside in the sun, your body produces vitamin D. It’s also found in several dairy products. Low-fat dairy products are better since they contain less saturated fat.
  • Potassium.NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease) may be associated with low levels (NAFLD). Cod, salmon, and sardines are excellent sources. It’s also found in fruits like bananas, kiwi, and apricots and broccoli, peas, and sweet potatoes. Potassium is also found in dairy foods such as milk and yoghurt. Choose low-fat alternatives.
  • Betaine. It may help to protect your liver against fatty deposits, but the evidence is conflicting. Wheat germ and shrimp both contain it.

Avoid Alcohol

If you have fatty liver disease due to excessive drinking, you should not drink at all. It has the potential to cause more significant liver damage. If you have NAFLD, you may be able to take a drink every other month, but not more than that. First, consult with your doctor.

Lose Weight

Even losing 5% of your overall weight may help you lose weight in your liver. If you lose between 7% and 10% of your body weight, you may reduce inflammation and the risk of liver cell damage. You may even be able to undo some of the damage. Slow down to 1 to 2 pounds every week. Rapid weight reduction has the potential to trigger the situation. If you’re having trouble losing weight, talk to your doctor about weight loss surgery.

Exercise for a Healthy Liver

Aerobic exercise may help you lose weight by reducing the amount of fat in your liver. Strenuous exercise may also help to reduce inflammation. Weight lifting and other resistance or strength training activities may help with fatty liver disease. At least five days a week, aim for 30 to 60 minutes of mid-to high-intensity aerobic activity and three days a week, aim for 30 to 60 minutes of mid-to high-intensity strength training.

Control Diabetes

To control your diabetes, follow your doctor’s instructions. Keep a careful eye on your blood sugar and take your medicines as directed.

Lower Your Cholesterol

Other things you may do to keep your liver healthy may help you maintain good cholesterol and triglycerides (fats in your blood). Eat a nutritious, plant-based diet, exercise regularly, and take medicines as directed by your doctor. This may help you maintain a healthy cholesterol and triglyceride level.

Sources

  1. https://www.webmd.com/hepatitis/fatty-liver-disease-diet 
  2. American Liver Foundation: “NAFLD."
  3. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis."
  4. Canadian Liver Foundation: “Fatty Liver Disease."
  5. Eslamparast, T. World Journal of Hepatology, published online Feb 27, 2015.
  6. Zivkovic, A. American Society for Clinical Nutrition, August 2007.
  7. Lai, M. The Liver Healing Diet, Ulysses Press, June 9, 2015.
  8. Oliveria, C. Journal of Diabetes Research, published online Dec 7, 2015.
  9. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database: “Vitamin E," “Goji."
  10. Scorletti, E. Annual Review of Nutrition, published online July 2013.
  11. American Heart Association: “Monounsaturated Fats."
  12. Xiao, J. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, published online April 2013.
  13. NHS Choices: “Do goji berries deserve their A-list status?"
  14. Eliades M, World Journal of Gastroenterology, Feb 14, 2015.
  15. Sun, K. Clinical Endocrinology, published online May 20, 2013.
  16. Harvard Health Publications: “Potassium lowers blood pressure."
  17. USDA: Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005, Appendix B.
  18. University of Maryland Medical Center: “Betaine."
  19. Medscape: “What Advice Should Be Given to Patients With NAFLD About the Consumption of Alcohol?"
  20. Pacana, T.  Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care, November 2012.
  21. University of Chicago Medicine: “Why some foods can help treat the nation’s most common chronic liver disease.”
  22. Harvard Health Publishing: “Fatty liver disease: What it is and what to do about it.”
  23. Hepatology: “Resistance exercise reduces liver fat and its mediators in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease independent of weight loss.”
  24. Exercise Medicine: “Regular Exercise as a Secondary Practical Treatment for Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease.”
  25. Mayo Clinic: “Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease,” “Triglycerides: Why do they matter?”

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