Signs and Symptoms
One of the things about fatty liver disease is that it often flies under the radar during the early stages. This is typically because it either does not manifest significant signs or symptoms that one would think to attribute to FLD, or because it does not manifest symptoms at all. Generally, a doctor’s exam may reveal the presence of FLD, especially if it is found that the liver is much larger than it normally should be. With that in mind, if you’re concerned about the possibility of FLD, schedule regular physicals to check your liver (and other organs).
In the event that one does have FLD, symptoms may manifest in the form of liver swelling due to inflammation, as well as abdominal pain, a loss of appetite and/or weight, fatigue or weakness, and in some cases, cognitive difficulties. If you are persistently suffering from any of these symptoms, consider seeking medical counsel.
As mentioned earlier, there is no silver bullet treatment or procedure that will completely take care of fatty liver disease, regardless of its causes. This means that the best thing you can do is adopt a healthy, nutritious and active lifestyle in order to preserve overall health and better manage your illness. You may not be able to change your genetics, but the other factors that contribute to FLD can be minimized by smart decision making.
Some of those smart lifestyle changes include better moderation of alcohol intake. This holds true regardless of whether you have ALD or NAFLD. If you’re a drinker with a fatty liver, it’s a good idea to stop drinking alcohol; if you’re not willing to give it up completely, take care to drink only in moderation. Other things you can do to better manage FLD include cutting down on fatty and sugary foods, while consuming more foods that are rich in fiber and healthy fats. Also, it helps to keep an eye on how much iron is in your diet as well.
Furthermore, if you keep track of your blood sugar and cholesterol, you can mitigate the effects of fatty liver disease. If you are obese or overweight, it is also helpful to adopt a weight loss regimen in addition to the above lifestyle changes.