- Liver Disease / Hepatic Disease
- What are the causes/types of liver disease?
- What are the stages of liver disease from initial inflammation to liver failure?
- What are the symptoms and risk factors of liver disease?
- What is the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of liver disease?
- The liver disease diet and outlook
The liver disease diet and outlook
The liver disease diet
A specialised diet has been advised for some patients with liver disease as this can aid in assisting the liver to function and prevent it from further strain. It is best to always speak to a medical professional regarding any dietary changes before making them.
The liver disease diet recommendations are as follows:
- The amount of protein eaten will need to be limited as this consumption aids in the build-up of toxins. Proteins typically help to repair tissue in the body, they are also able to prevent the build-up of fat. However, in those who have liver disease, the liver is not able to process the protein properly which results in waste products building up and affecting the brain.
- Protein intake should be aimed at roughly 1g (0.035oz) per 1kg (2.2lb) of a person’s total body weight. This is not including the protein found in vegetables and starches. If liver disease is more severe, then protein intake may need to be further reduced. It is vital not to limit proteins too much as this can reduce the availability of amino acids needed by the body for a number of functions as amino acids are found in a number of tissues in the body and aid in muscle growth, strength and recovery.
- Carbohydrate intake should be in proportion to the amount of protein eaten, if not more. Carbohydrates will aid in the digestion of proteins.
- Sodium (salt) intake should be limited as salt can worsen the build-up of fluid as well as liver inflammation, this is specifically vital for those suffering from water retention.
- Medications that have been prescribed must be taken along with vitamin B as this aids in the production of red blood cells and cognitive functioning.
What is the outlook for liver disease?
The prognosis for liver disease will be dependent on the cause of the disease and the extent of the damage and scarring done to the liver. Acute liver failure is often fatal as it occurs instantly, whereas chronic liver failure or severe cirrhosis is sometimes able to be treated long enough for the patient to undergo a liver transplant.
As stated, the liver is the only organ in the body that is capable of healing itself. Therefore, should the extent of the damage be manageable, the symptoms and damage can be treated which may result in a positive prognosis for the patient should he or she stick to their treatment.