What is fatty liver?

Fatty liver, or steatosis, is a term that describes the build-up of excess fat in the liver. While it’s normal to have some fat in your liver for its regular functioning, when fat makes up at least 5% of the liver its termed as fatty liver. Fatty liver can be a completely benign (Not harmful) condition and usually does not lead to liver damage. However, once there is a build-up of simple fat, the liver becomes vulnerable to further injury, which may result in inflammation and scarring of the liver.

Causes of fatty liver include:

  • Alcoholism- Most common cause
  • Obesity
  • hyperlipidemia, or high levels of fats in the blood
  • Diabetes
  • Genetic inheritance
  • Rapid weight loss
  • Side effect of certain medications, including aspirin, steroids, tamoxifen, and tetracycline.

There isn’t a medication or surgery to treat fatty liver. Lifestyle modifications like-

  • Limiting or avoiding alcoholic beverages
  • Managing your cholesterol
  • Losing weight
  • Controlling your blood sugar
  • Avoiding high amount of fatty and sugary foods 
  • Dietary modification-Increasing fibre like fruits and vegetables, Whole grain cereals, sprouts
  • Exercising- 45-60 minutes at least 4-5 days/week