Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is now the most common cause of chronic liver disease in North America.
Some people with excess fat in the liver simply have what's called a fatty liver. Although this is not normal, it's not serious if it doesn't lead to inflammation or damage. However, once there's a buildup of simple fat, the liver becomes vulnerable to injury which may result in inflammation and scarring of the liver. Others have what's called Nonalcoholic Steatohepatisis (NASH). Although it is similar to alcoholic liver disease, people with this type of fatty liver disease drink little or no alcohol. NASH can lead to permanent liver damage, as the liver may enlarge and, over time, liver cells may be replaced by scar tissue. This is called cirrhosis.
Unfortunately both types of NAFLD are becoming more common. Up to 20 percent of adults may have either fatty liver or NASH. One of the most common causes of fatty liver disease is obesity as well as Diabetes Mellitus. More than 6 million children have one of these conditions, which are most common in Asian and Hispanic children.
Based on the most current and comprehensive information available, the authors have created this indispensable guide for anyone living with and managing fatty liver disease. There is extensive information on the causes of NAFLD, the symptoms and signs, and the treatment options like medications, exercise and diet. Because diet plays such a major role in managing the condition, there are 75 specially selected recipes that contribute to a well-balanced diet that is low in saturated fats and high in fiber.
Maitreyi Raman, MD, MSc, FRCPC, is a gastroenterologist and physician nutritionist. She is the medical director of the Southern Alberta Home Enteral and Parenteral Program.
Angela Siriounis, RD, BSc, is a clinical dietitian at Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary, Alberta, who works in enteral and parenteral nutrition support, in both in- and out-patient settings.
Jennifer Shrubsole, RD, BSc, is a clinical dietitian at Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary, Alberta. She specializes in enteral and parenteral nutrition support for gastrointestinal medical and surgical patients.