Nonalcoholic fatty liver diseaseThe accumulation of liver fat in people who drink little or no alcohol.
Hepatitis CAn infection caused by a virus that attacks the liver and leads to inflammation.
Hepatitis BA serious liver infection caused by the hepatitis B virus that’s easily preventable by a vaccine.
Cirrhosis of the liverChronic liver damage from a variety of causes leading to scarring and liver failure.
Alcoholic hepatitisLiver inflammation caused by drinking too much alcohol.
Hepatitis AA highly contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus.
HemochromatosisAn inherited condition caused by excessive absorption of iron, leading to high blood iron levels and iron deposits in multiple joints.
The best way to fight liver disease is to avoid it, if at all possible. Here are 13 ways to achieve liver wellness. Appropriately, that’s one useful tip for each year of the new century!
- Maintain a healthy weight. If you’re obese or even somewhat overweight, you’re in danger of having a fatty liver that can lead to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), one of the fastest growing forms of liver disease. Weight loss can play an important part in helping to reduce liver fat.
- Eat a balanced diet. Avoid high calorie-meals, saturated fat, refined carbohydrates (such as white bread, white rice and regular pasta) and sugars. Don’t eat raw or undercooked shellfish. For a well-adjusted diet, eat fiber, which you can obtain from fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain breads, rice and cereals. Also eat meat (but limit the amount of red meat), dairy (low-fat milk and small amounts of cheese) and fats (the “good” fats that are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated such as vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, and fish). Hydration is essential, so drink a lot of water.
- Exercise regularly. When you exercise consistently, it helps to burn triglycerides for fuel and can also reduce liver fat.
- Avoid toxins. Toxins can injure liver cells. Limit direct contact with toxins from cleaning and aerosol products, insecticides, chemicals, and additives. When you do use aerosols, make sure the room is ventilated, and wear a mask. Don’t smoke.
- Use alcohol responsibly. Alcoholic beverages can create many health problems. They can damage or destroy liver cells and scar your liver. Talk to your doctor about what amount of alcohol is right for you. You may be advised to drink alcohol only in moderation or to quit completely.
- Avoid the use of illicit drugs. In 2012, nearly 24 million Americans aged 12 or older were current illicit drug users, meaning they had used an illicit drug during the month prior to the survey interview. This estimate represents 9.2 percent of the population aged 12 or older. Illicit drugs include marijuana/hashish, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants, or prescription-type psychotherapeutics (pain relievers, tranquilizers, stimulants, and sedatives) used non-medically.
- Avoid contaminated needles. Of course, dirty needles aren’t only associated with intravenous drug use. You ought to follow up with a medical practitioner and seek testing following any type of skin penetration involving sharp instruments or needles. Unsafe injection practices, though rare, may occur in a hospital setting, and would need immediate follow-up. Also, use only clean needles for tattoos and body piercings.
- Get medical care if you’re exposed to blood. If for any reason you come into contact with someone else’s blood, immediately follow up with your doctor. If you’re very concerned, go to your nearest hospital’s emergency room.
- Don’t share personal hygiene items. For example, razors, toothbrushes and nail clippers can carry microscopic levels of blood or other body fluids that may be contaminated.
- Practice safe sex. Unprotected sex or sex with multiple partners increases your risk of hepatitis B and hepatitis C.
- Wash your hands. Use soap and warm water immediately after using the bathroom, when you have changed a diaper, and before preparing or eating food.
- Follow directions on all medications. When medicines are taken incorrectly by taking too much, the wrong type or by mixing medicines, your liver can be harmed. Never mix alcohol with other drugs and medications even if they’re not taken at the same time. Tell your doctor about any over-the-counter medicines, supplements, and natural or herbal remedies that you use.
- Get vaccinated. There are vaccines for hepatitis A and hepatitis B. Unfortunately, there’s no vaccine against the hepatitis C virus.
[Source for #6: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Results from the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Summary of National Findings, NSDUH Series H-46, HHS Publication No. (SMA) 13-4795. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2013, p. 1.]
The liver is the largest glandular organ located in the right side of your abdomen. The main functions of the liver is to produce bile, which is a digestive juice necessary for digestion of fat, helps in removal of toxins from your body, production of certain proteins in plasma of the blood and maintenance of the body’s metabolism.
Jaundice, Hepatitis, Fatty liver, Hepatomegaly (enlargement of liver), Liver abscess, Liver cirrhosis and gallstones are the common liver disorders.
Following are the factors which may precipitate the chance of liver diseases:
- Consumption of alcohol in large quantity.
- Drug abuse.
- Abnormal cholesterol levels in blood.
- Exposure to certain toxins or chemicals.
- Spread of infection from the infected person through unprotected sex, sharing needles or blood transfusion.
General signs and symptoms of liver diseases:
- Itching, yellowish discolouration of skin and sclera of the eyes.
- Nausea/ vomiting.
- Loss of appetite.
- Abnormality in digestion.
- Change in colour of your urine and stools.
- Pain or discomfort in your side of your abdomen.
Home Remedies for Liver Health
You may try the following home remedies for healthy liver and improve its function-
- Carrot juice is known to have benefits for jaundice.
- 4 gms of Indian gooseberry taken with water every day for 15-20 days, helps to regulate overall liver function.
- Juice of Guduchi taken daily on empty stomach, detoxifies the liver.
- Consumption of 5-6 ml of bhumy amalaki swarasa for 3-4 days is also beneficial.
- Pomegranate, raisins, coconut water, sugar cane juice, etc., can be consumed regularly.
Avoid pickles, heavy-oily foods ,sour-fermented foods, alcohol, smoking, self medications and minimise the intake of non vegetarian foods and salt.
Ayurveda for Liver Health
Vitiation of pitta dosha is the main cause for hepatitis, cirrhosis, jaundice, anaemia, or chronic fatigue syndrome.
The following herbs are found to be very effective in protecting the liver and curing all kinds of liver disease:
A COMPLETE CARE FOR LIVER
1. Improve liver functions
2.Halts fatty enlargement of the liver and cirrhosis
3. Gives good results in hepatitis.
Never neglect liver diseases as they may progress to liver failure, which is fatal.