Fatty liver


Overview

Excessive fat is accumulated in the liver and leads to a condition called fatty liver. There are two main types:

  • Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
  • Alcoholic fatty liver disease, also called alcoholic steatohepatitis.

Some amount of fat is already in the liver. When the quantity of accumulated fat increases to more than 5-10 % of its normal weight, the condition is known as fatty liver disease. Over time, with excessive alcohol consumption or other unhealthy lifestyles, the cumulative toxicity can result in liver cell injury, inflammation, and a weakening of your body’s natural defenses.

Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Pain and discomfort in the upper right abdomen
  • Abdominal swelling (ascites)
  • Enlarged blood vessels just beneath the skin’s surface
  • Red palms
  • Yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice).

In Ayurveda, fatty liver disease may be understood as Yakrth (liver disease) and Medoroga (obesity). A vast spectrum of diseases comes under Yakṛt Roga (liver disease) ranging from simple hepatic steatosis to hepatomegaly to liver cirrhosis. According to Ayurveda there are three elements present in our body they are vata, pitta and kapha which are in balance in a healthy individual. Excessive intake of alcohol, spicy and oily food blocks the body channels. This leads to vitiation of Pitha-kapha dosha and these vitiated doshas leads to Agni mandya (impairment in digestive fire) and that leads to Yakṛtodara.

Causes

  • Excessive intake of alcohol
  • Excessive intake of spicy oily food/unctuous food
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Overweight or obesity
  • High levels of fats, particularly triglycerides, in the blood
  • Insulin resistance, in which your cells don't take up sugar in response to the hormone -insulin 
     

Treatment

Treatment protocol aims at ;

  1. Removal of excess fat accumulated in the liver maintains normal fat metabolism.
  2. Prevent fat deposition in the liver.
  3. Rejuvenating  the liver cells and preventing liver damage (Hepatoprotective).

The first line of treatment should always be avoiding the causative factors. If the problem persists then consider the following treatment protocol.

  • Pain and discomfort in the upper right abdomen,Swelling, fatigue- Liver is situated in the upper right part of abdomen. In some cases extreme inflammation in the liver as a result of excessive fat deposition causes pain and discomfort. It might also result in enlarged vessels or dilated capillaries causing red palm. Lashunadi vati, Chitrakadi vati are effective in this condition by enhancing the fat burning process by correcting the digestive fire. Suvarna makshika and Arogyavardhini vati are strong anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Fatigue, yellowing of skin and eyes (jaundice) - Bilirubin is formed by the breakdown of red blood cells in the body. The liver helps to excrete it. If the liver is not working properly excretion will not happen and leads to high bilirubin level resulting in Jaundice. Haritaki, Amalaki, Bibhitaki will help to cleanse the digestive system and normalise vitiated doshas. Bhrngaraja, Kutaki, Kumari are the powerful drugs which protect the liver from liver  damage (hepatoprotective).

           (The above mentioned Ayurvedic drugs are Herbs and Herbomineral preparations)

Other Therapies:  virechana/Purgation therapy (cleaning digestive tract and purifies blood).

Herbs

Haritaki, Amalaki, Bibhitaki, Chitraka, Bhringaraja, Kutaki, Kumari, Arogyavardhini vati, Lashunadi vati.

When to see a doctor?

Make an appointment with your doctor if you have persistent signs and symptoms that cause you concern.


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