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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 alcohol abuse.
Call your local emergency number (911 in the US) or have someone call if:
- You have shortness of breath.
- You have trouble thinking clearly or are confused.
Seek care immediately if:
- You feel lightheaded or faint.
- You have shaking, chills, and a fever.
Call your doctor or liver specialist if:
- You have more 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.
- Medicines may be given to manage your blood sugar or cholesterol levels.
- Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him or her 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.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Ask your healthcare provider what a healthy weight is for you. Ask him or her to help you create a weight loss plan if you are overweight.
- Exercise as directed. Aerobic exercise 3 times a week for 20 to 45 minutes can help decrease fat buildup in your liver. Examples are cycling, brisk walking, or jogging. Ask your healthcare provider about the best exercise plan for you.
- Eat a variety of healthy foods. Healthy foods include 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. Ask your healthcare provider for information if you need help to quit drinking.
Follow up with your doctor 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.
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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.
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