World Liver Day: Focus on Better Liver Health

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April 19 is observed as World Liver Day and Talwalkars would like to educate its readers a few handy facts about liver and liver health.

Liver a vital body organ plays a key role not only in the proper functioning of the digestive system but also by supporting every other organ in the body. The liver functions to keep the body clean from toxins and other harmful substances. In fact, a person cannot have a healthy life if he or she suffers from any liver disorders.

Contrary to common belief, liver diseases are not restricted to alcohol consumers or binge drinkers; it also affects non-alcohol consumers owing to their high Body Mass Index (BMI). As per a World Health Organization (WHO) report, 2.45% of deaths in India are due to liver diseases, and surprising Non-Alcoholic Steato-Hepatitis (or NASH) is the common cause of liver diseases.

Some of the causes of long-term liver ailments as below:

  • Excess consumption of alcohol
  • Fat accumulating in the liver
  • Unhealthy eating habits and lifestyle
  • High BMI (body mass index)
  • Obesity
  • Genetic issues
  • Hepatitis A, B, C and E (spread through contaminated food or water)
  • Certain drugs and medications

Although the proper focus on health is needed to protect the liver, people on their part can at least regulate their alcohol consumption. It is said that consuming 40 gm (or roughly 40 ml) of alcohol per day for 10-12 years can damage the liver. In Indian parlance, it is one small peg of liquor.

The problem with the diagnosis of liver disease is that it is hard to detect it in its initial stage. However, people should be mindful of its symptoms. And if these signs are prominent then you must consult a doctor immediately.

Symptoms of liver anomalies:

  • Unexplained nausea and vomiting
  • Chronic tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Yellow skin and eyes
  • Dark yellow urine
  • Itchy skin
  • Abdominal swelling with pain

When it comes to liver diseases prevention is always better than cure, because the cure can sometimes include stringent dieting.

Prevention of liver diseases

  • Healthy eating and exercising, two things that Talwalkars always urges its readers
  • Avoid smoking, using tobacco products, alcohol consumption, and recreational drugs
  • Always consult a doctor before taking medicines, never self-medicate
  • Liver cleansing
    • Eat fiber rich food including fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grain bread
    • Eat a balanced diet
    • Foods for healthy liver: Cruciferous veggies, onion, garlic, beetroot, cabbage, carrots, green tea, walnuts, turmeric, etc.
    • Fruits: Most citrus fruits including grapefruit, lemons, etc.

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