When the fat builds up in the liver of the human body, it is called a Fatty Liver. If there is a small amount of fat in the liver, then it is considered normal, but if the percentage of fat increases in the liver, then it is a serious health problem. Most of the people don’t know how severe it can be.
Liver, the second largest organ in the human body, helps in the processing of nutrients from the food and drinks. It also helps to filter out all the harmful substances from the blood. To much fat present in the liver can turn into liver inflammation, and this can directly damage the liver. In some cases, the fatty liver turns into scarring and then results in liver failure.
Types of Fatty Liver
Fatty liver is of two types, i.e. the Alcoholic Fatty Liver and the non-Alcoholic fatty liver. The fatty liver that develops in someone who drinks a lot of alcohol then it is termed as alcoholic fatty liver. And when the fatty liver develops in the person who doesn’t drink alcohol, then it is named as non-alcoholic fatty liver.
Alcoholic Fatty Liver: The alcoholic fatty liver disorder is due to heavy alcohol usage. The liver is the only organ that breaks down the alcohol you drink so that it can be withdrawn from your body. But when the liver starts breaking down the alcohol it produces harmful substances. The substances produced after breaking down of the alcohol can damage liver cells, promote inflammation, and weaken your body’s natural defences. If you drink more alcohol then there will be more damage to the liver. The Alcoholic fatty liver is the first stage of liver disease. After this Cirrhosis and alcoholic are the next stages.
Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver: It is the type of fatty liver which is not related to heavy alcohol use. It is of two kinds. First one is the simple fatty liver. In this, there is fat in your liver, but it produces a little inflammation. The second one is Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. In this case, there is inflammation and liver cell damage. This type of fatty liver can also lead to Cirrhosis and liver cancer.
Risk For Fatty Liver Diseases
There are many risk factors for fatty liver diseases. It is more common in the people:
– having type 2 diabetes and prediabetes
– have obesity
– middle-aged or older
– who have high levels of fats in the blood
– have high blood pressure
– who take certain drugs, such as corticosteroids and some cancer drugs
– have certain metabolic disorders, including metabolic syndrome
– have rapid weight loss
– have certain infections, such as hepatitis C
– have been exposed to some toxins
Symptoms of Fatty Liver
Well in most of the cases, the fatty liver disease causes no symptoms. But you may feel tired always and feel pain in the upper right side of the abdomen. In some people, the fatty liver disease develops complications such as liver scarring. Liver Fibrosis is the name given to the liver scarring and if there is severe liver fibrosis, then it is known as Cirrhosis. Some symptoms of liver cirrhosis are:
– loss of appetite
– weight loss
– Nose bleeding
– yellow skin and eyes
– abdominal pain & swelling
– swelling of your legs
– breast enlargement in men
Causes Of Fatty Liver
The liver turns into fatty liver when the body produces so much fat. The extra fat is stored in the liver. And it causes the fatty liver. There are many causes of fatty liver development. One such reason is drinking too much alcohol. It can cause alcoholic fatty liver disease. Well to the unaware, this is the first stage of the alcohol-related fatty liver disease.
Some other causes of fatty liver include obesity, insulin resistance, high levels of fat and high blood sugar etc. Hepatitis C, rapid weight loss, pregnancy are some less common causes of fatty liver.