Fatty Liver Disease
Fatty liver disease is defined by excess liver fat, as the name suggests. It's normal to have an amount of fat in the liver, but if it makes up over 10% of the liver's weight, then you may be diagnosed with Fatty Liver Disease. In that case you may not experience any symptoms, but it can lead to problems later in your life. We treat two types of Fatty Liver Disease at The Liver Centre WA in Perth: Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease.
Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
When you are a heavy drinker and you are concerned about Fatty Liver Disease, talk to your GP about being referred to one of our specialists here at The Liver Centre WA. We have excellent dietitians and liver physicians who can help get your drinking habits under control by understanding your needs through attentive and trusted communication.
Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is commonly caused by obesity. So how do we define overweight?
A widely used measure to define "obesity" is the Body Mass Index (BMI). A BMI calculation is based on your height and weight. Calculate your BMI here:
If your GP believes that you may have Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, they will refer you to a specialist clinic like The Liver Centre WA for further examination and assessment. Our team of Perth based dietitians and doctors will then be able to diagnose NAFLD, and plan a non-surgical treatment for your condition.
At The Surgeons Collective, our associated clinic, we also offer bariatric surgery (also called obesity surgery) for patients who have been diagnosed as being overweight. It may be the preferred and recommended treatment option indicated for advanced Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease.
Good and bad fats
There is a lot of confusion around fats that are good for us and fats that are bad for us.
Good fat is often called unsaturated fat. Unsaturated fat keeps arteries clear. That is because healthy fats help our body transport fat and cholesterol around the body and maintain a healthy heart function. Unsaturated fat also reduces bad cholesterol, which is linked to heart problems.
Now bad fat comes in the form of saturated fat and trans fat. Both types of bad fats make our bodies produce more bad cholesterol, and they can also reduce good cholesterol. Both bad fats can increase the risk of heart disease later in life. So it’s important to avoid saturated or bad fats when you have been diagnosed with Fatty Liver Disease. Our team of dietitians here at The Liver Centre WA in Perth will recommend and prescribe a specific diet to help you manage and improve your Fatty Liver Disease.
Can fatty liver disease be reversed?
The answer is yes. Fatty Liver Disease is reversible. But if fibrosis or cirrhosis have developed, then these conditions are not reversible. Losing weight will generally help to reverse Fatty Liver Disease.
It’s recommended to work with qualified dietitians and a well structured program, because your weight loss needs to be targeted over a specific period of time.
Our dietitians at The Liver Centre WA work closely together with our hepatologists and liver specialists, to help you with a personalised diet plan.
With Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD), our first step is to help you make important lifestyle changes so you can lose weight. Throughout the duration of your treatment our team will be here to help you, offering support to make the important changes to your diet and lifestyle. Even losing 5% of weight can help improve your condition, and our dietitians will follow up on your progress, implementing the changes and improving your overall health and the condition of your liver.
In general, our diet recommendations for fatty liver may include:
- Reducing the intake of trans and saturated fats
- Choosing whole grain bread varieties
- Including fruits and vegetables in your diet
- Limit your sugar intake
With Alcoholic Fatty Liver, your dietitian will advise you to stop drinking alcohol, as fatty liver is reversible in early stages. We will help you with a personalised diet plan, similar to a diet for NAFLD.
Help with your diet is only one aspect of our continuous efforts to support you, providing excellence in care and genuine comfort as you go through your treatment journey. If you have any questions about fatty liver or about the treatments that are available, please contact The Liver Centre WA in Perth to make an appointment: 08 6163 2800.