6 Habits to avoid to Keep Your Liver Healthy!
Most people refrain from paying attention to the well-being of their liver. It is an important organ which flushes away toxins from the body and is responsible for carrying out tasks like filtering toxins, producing bile, transforming carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins and minerals. As a delicate organ, it is indispensable to take adequate care of the liver to maximise its longevity and efficiency.
Today, with the advent of poor lifestyle choices and habits, many people are starting to get sick at a faster rate. Conditions like liver cirrhosis, acute liver damage, fatty liver are more common than they were decades ago which has led to a rise in liver transplants. As one of the best liver hospitals in India, Max Healthcare advises people to follow certain health habits if they wish to keep their liver healthy and increase their longevity.
Stay away from these habits if you want to keep your liver away from damage:
Alcohol is one of the biggest reasons for acute liver damage. Consuming excessive alcohol, either on a single occasion or over time can result in scarring of the liver which can take a toll on your health and well-being. It can be life-threatening and injure your liver significantly. Excessive consumption of alcohol can cause ALD (alcohol-related diseases).
The three stages of ALD are Fatty Liver, Alcoholic Hepatitis, and Liver Cirrhosis.
1. Fatty Liver –The first stage of ALD, Fatty Liver or steatosis is a highly prevalent liver disease. As the name goes, fatty liver is characterised by an excessive accumulation of fat inside the liver cells which makes it hard for the liver to function properly. Heavy drinkers usually get to the fatty liver stage early on.
2. Alcoholic Hepatitis – Alcoholic Hepatitis is the second stage of ALD, which is characterised by the inflammation of the liver where liver cells degenerate quickly. This condition might last for years and will progress to absolute liver damage. In critical cases, it can lead to life-threatening complications like liver cirrhosis and absolute liver damage.
3. Liver Cirrhosis – Liver cirrhosis is the final stage of ALD where scarring of healthy liver tissue occurs. It is an irreversible and a severe condition. A patient with liver cirrhosis will witness the following symptoms, along with the symptoms of alcoholic hepatitis –
- Fluid accumulation in abdomen
- High blood pressure in liver
- Spleen enlargement
- Bleeding from veins
Obesity is one of the leading causes of various liver problems. Overweight people are at a considerable risk of developing fatty liver which can progress to NAFLD (Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease). Obesity is also linked to heart diseases and is one of the fastest growing reasons for liver diseases. Hence, make sure you maintain a healthy weight and adopt practices that will keep you fit and fine.
Substance abuse can lead to a lot more problems than just liver diseases. As a principle cause of organ failure and deaths, drug abuse is linked to a high number of fatalities. Not only drugs are illegal, but they are also highly damaging to the liver. Certain prescription medicines, when taken in high dosage are also known to cause acute liver problems. It is imperative to follow the doctor’s advice, and not go overboard with some medicines, especially painkillers, antibiotics, acetaminophen and more.
Bad Diet and Skipping Breakfast
Skipping breakfast and not eating a balanced diet will affect your liver severely. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. When we wake up, our glucose levels and energy reserves are deficient. Not eating breakfast affects the liver and prevents it from performing essential tasks. Furthermore, a bad diet which is full of junk food will result in a fatty liver because of excessive amounts of sodium, sugar, salt and calories.
The liver synthesises cholesterol, and the body uses it as energy for several cells. It forms a fundamental element for numerous cells in the body. Hence, it is important not to eliminate it altogether or let it exceed the permissible levels. Cholesterol that is not used by the body is stored in the liver, which can cause fatty liver disease. In severe cases, a liver transplant is the only option. Therefore, one should avoid overeating high-fat foods, red meat, salt and sugar.
It is necessary to drop the idea of a lifestyle which damages your mind and body. Liver damage can take a toll on people, and it may be hard for them to source a transplant when the time comes. So instead of waiting for that to occur, it is vital to take essential steps right now and save yourself from a possible adverse condition.