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Fatty liver: a silent danger

Accumulation of fat in the liver can lead to serious liver disease. Know the causes and symptoms of fatty liver.

fatty liver or hepatic steatosis is an accumulation of fat in liver cells, corresponding to 5-10% of its total mass.

It is a very common clinical situation in Portugal, affecting around 15% of Portuguese adults.

It may not evolve into a more worrying liver injury or, on the contrary, it may cause inflammation of the liver tissue, degeneration of the organ, causing cirrhosis.

Therefore, hepatic steatosis thus constitutes the stage prior to the development of permanent liver damage.

8 causes of fatty liver

  1. Excessive intake of fat in the diet, overloading the liver in its transformation in order to be eliminated, accumulating the surplus in the hepatic tissues.
  2. Overweight or obeseThein.
  3. Alcohol consumption.
  4. Diabetes and high cholesterol.
  5. Fast weight loss.
  6. certain genetic metabolic diseases.
  7. Use of some medications.
  8. Ingestion of toxins and mushrooms.

4 symptoms of fatty liver

Most people have no symptoms or complications. Sometimes it can happen:

  1. Tiredness;
  2. Nausea and vomiting;
  3. Abdominal pain or discomfort;
  4. Loss of appetite.

Alterations are detected through blood tests, which reveal an increase in liver enzymes (transaminases) and through abdominal ultrasound, which reveals an increase in the size of the organ (hepatomegaly).

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fatty liver treatment

There are no specific medications to treat fatty liver. Treatment is through lifestyle changes, eating a low-fat diet, losing weight, and engaging in regular exercise.

Infusions and medicinal plants

Artichoke: plant that can be consumed in the form of infusion, syrup or including in food (canned artichoke heart). One of its main properties is liver regeneration and protection, helping the liver to function properly, facilitating difficult digestions. It also helps to lower cholesterol levels and improves all liver and biliary function.

Milk thistle: The infusion of this medicinal plant has remarkable therapeutic benefits at the hepatic level. It helps to keep the liver healthy, through its important protective and regenerating action, just like the artichoke.

Dandelion: this very common plant, used as an infusion, has several beneficial health properties. It is a liver tonic, improving the functioning of the liver and gallbladder. Very used in difficult digestions, especially after exaggerated meals. Helps detoxify the liver.


To eliminate fat in the liver, you should avoid eating foods rich in fat and sugar, such as red meat, sausages (bacon, sausage, chorizo, sausage, sausage, ham), cakes, biscuits, sweets, as they increase cholesterol and blood sugar, which favors the accumulation of fat in that organ.

In addition, it is important to eliminate the consumption of alcoholic beverages, as alcohol is responsible for increasing the absorption of fatty acids in the liver. Increase the consumption of fruits, vegetables and cereals such as linseed, chia and oats, as they are rich in fiber, which help to reduce the absorption of fat in the intestine.

Physical activity

Physical exercise helps increase metabolism and burn accumulated fat. Essential for losing and controlling weight, it should be done regularly between 3 to 4 times a week, about 40 to 60 minutes.

control diseases

Illnesses such as diabetes and high cholesterol increase the risk of fatty liver and later, more serious liver damage. Excess blood sugar forces the body to convert sugar into fat to maintain blood glucose levels. High cholesterol, by itself, is already a sign of excess fat in the body.

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