A new study has found that an experimental high-protein, lower-carbohydrate diet or a medication called orlistat could help reduce liver fat in patients with obesity and metabolic-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD).
Metabolic-associated fatty liver disease is a condition where too much fat builds up in the liver.
It is a condition where too much fat accumulates in the liver cells of people who drink little to no alcohol. It is a common condition that affects millions of people worldwide.
It can lead to inflammation and scarring over time. Losing weight through lifestyle changes, such as exercise and a healthy diet, is usually the first-line treatment for MAFLD.
However, it can be difficult for people to stick to these changes long-term.
In this study, 118 Asian patients with obesity and MAFLD were randomly assigned to one of three groups: a control group, an orlistat group, or an experimental diet group.
The experimental diet group followed a diet that was high in protein and low in carbohydrates, while the control group did not receive any specific intervention.
After 24 weeks, all three groups showed improvement in liver steatosis (the buildup of fat in the liver).
However, the orlistat group and the experimental diet group showed greater improvements than the control group.
The experimental diet group had the greatest reduction in liver fat content, with a 30.2% relative reduction compared to a 12.2% reduction in the control group.
These findings suggest that an experimental high-protein, lower-carbohydrate diet or the medication orlistat could be effective in reducing liver fat in Asian patients with obesity and MAFLD.
However, it’s important to note that further research is needed to confirm these findings and to determine the long-term effects of these interventions on liver health.
How to prevent metabolic-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD)
MAFLD can be prevented and managed through healthy lifestyle habits. Here are some tips to prevent MAFLD:
Maintain a healthy weight: Being overweight or obese is a significant risk factor for MAFLD. Maintaining a healthy weight through a balanced diet and regular exercise can help reduce the risk of developing MAFLD.
Eat a healthy diet: A healthy diet that is low in saturated and trans fats, and high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help prevent MAFLD. Avoiding sugary and processed foods can also help reduce the risk.
Exercise regularly: Regular physical activity can help reduce body fat and improve insulin sensitivity, which can help prevent MAFLD. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week.
Limit alcohol consumption: Drinking too much alcohol can cause liver damage and increase the risk of MAFLD. Men should limit their alcohol intake to two drinks per day, while women should limit it to one drink per day.
Manage underlying health conditions: Conditions like obesity, type 2 diabetes, and high cholesterol can increase the risk of MAFLD.
Managing these conditions through medication, lifestyle changes, or a combination of both can help prevent and manage MAFLD.
It’s important to note that prevention and management of MAFLD may require medical treatment and advice from a healthcare professional.
If you’re concerned about your risk of MAFLD or are experiencing symptoms, speak with your doctor.
The research was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and was conducted by Xiongcai Feng et al.
If you care about liver health, please read studies about dairy foods linked to liver cancer, and coffee drinkers may halve their risk of liver cancer.
For more information about liver health, please see recent studies that an anti-inflammatory diet could help prevent fatty liver disease, and results showing vitamin D could help prevent non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
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