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Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a buildup of fat in your liver from a condition other than alcoholism.
- Medicines may be given to manage blood sugar or cholesterol levels.
- Take your medicine as directed. Contact your primary healthcare provider (PHP) if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
Follow up with your PHP as directed:
You may need to return for more tests. You may also be referred to a specialist. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Ask your PHP how much you should weigh. Ask him to help you create a weight loss plan if you are overweight.
- Exercise. Aerobic exercise 3 times a week for 20 to 45 minutes can help decrease fat buildup in your liver. Examples are cycling, brisk walking, and jogging. Ask your PHP about the best exercise plan for you.
- Eat healthy foods. Examples are vegetables, fruit, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, lean meats, and fish. Foods low in simple carbohydrates, high fructose corn syrup, and trans fat may help decrease fat buildup in your liver.
- Do not drink alcohol. Alcohol may make NAFLD worse and harm your liver.
Contact your PHP if:
- You have increased pain or swelling in your abdomen.
- You feel more tired than usual.
- You bruise or bleed easily.
- Your skin or the whites of your eyes look yellow.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
Return to the emergency department if:
- You have shortness of breath.
- You have trouble thinking clearly or are confused.
- You feel lightheaded or faint.
- You have shaking, chills, and a fever.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.