‘Is life worth living? It depends on the liver’ It may be a bit aggravating, but it is true to some extent! The liver is the largest solid, internal organ of our body and is also responsible for removing toxins from the blood and other crucial bodily functions.
At the same time, the liver disease affects the lives of millions of patients and is the 10th most common cause of death, as per WHO reports. Thus, every 19th April is celebrated as World Liver Day to raise awareness about liver diseases.
Since prevention is better than cure, we have shared some doctor-approved tips that you can follow to improve your liver health.
• Keep an eye on your weight
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease or NAFLD is one of the chronic liver diseases worldwide, including in India. In most cases, obesity leads to this condition. Thus, maintaining a healthy weight is crucial to ensuring good liver health. The easiest way to determine your ideal weight is by subtracting 100 from your height in cm.
You can start exercising as it is beneficial for your overall health and helps in weight loss. A regular 45-mins of physical activity with dietary modification is the key to a healthy liver.
• Maintain a balanced diet
High calorie-foods, refined carbohydrates and saturated fat are extremely bad for livers and overall health. Hence, try to avoid these and eat a balanced diet containing fresh fruits, whole-grain breads, vegetables, and other high-fibre foods.
At the same time, drinking a lot of water is also essential.
• Limit or stop alcohol consumption
Alcoholic drinks can damage liver cells in the long run. Likewise, studies showed smoking could also lead to liver cancer. Thus, it is better to consult a doctor to know how much alcohol you can have and cut down or stop the consumption accordingly.
The same applies to smoking, as besides causing liver diseases, it also increases the toxic effects of certain medications on the liver.
• Limit protein intake
While protein builds our body, intake of excessive protein on a regular basis can do more harm than good. Eating too many proteins and carbohydrates are often converted to triglycerides, stored in fat cells, and accumulated in the liver.
More specifically, animal proteins are more prone to cause liver triglycerides.
• Take precautions against Hepatitis B or C
A person can transmit Hepatitis B and C through unprotected sex or blood-to-blood contact. Thus, practice safe sex and avoid sharing the same needles, toothbrushes, and razors to improve liver health.
If you are planning to get a tattoo, try to opt for a decent and clean place that ensures proper sterilisation processes.
It would be best if you also took Hepatitis A and B vaccines to be on the safer side. In case your parents are carriers, and you are not sure, go for Hepatitis screening. On the other hand, if you are already Hepatitis B or C carrier, consult doctors early to start treatments immediately.
Do you check your liver health regularly? Let us know in the comments below!