If you are like me, your prognosis of fatty liver disease might have come out of the blue. Sure, I was a bit overweight and not quite eating enough of the right foods. I was feeling tired a lot, but heck, I wasn’t exactly in my twenties.
So when my doctor told me I have NAFLD (Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease), I had to wonder if my time was up.
Fortunately, that’s not the case at all. Doing an Internet search brought me to The Fatty Liver Diet Guide. It is rich in information that can help you reverse this disease.
Written by a nurse specializing in the hepatology (liver) field named Dorothy Spencer, this book is the product of years of her active medical research and hospital work.
I found out that millions of people around the world suffer from Fatty Liver Disease. In fact, studies estimate that nearly a third of the entire U.S. adult population has it, and most don’t know it. That’s because there’s almost no symptoms. Most cases, thankfully, won’t turn serious.
This disease is an equal opportunity condition, affecting people of both genders, all nationalities and ages.
There are two kinds of fatty Liver disease, and each has it’s own worsening variations:
- Alcoholic Liver Disease, or ALD
- Non-alcoholic Liver Disease, or NAFLD
It is estimated that approximately 15 million people in the United States abuse alcohol and of that number, almost every one of them will develop the first type of fatty liver disease.
The second type of fatty liver disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, is the most prevalent cause of chronic liver disease in America today. This is what I had.
You are considered to have Fatty Liver Disease if your liver is made up of more than 5-10% fat. In many cases, the disease is silent and sufferers may not even realize they have it. But for many others, it accounts for a wide range of undesirable symptoms.
NASH – A Worse Form of The Disease
It is important to know that there is a progression to a worsening condition of fatty liver disease, called NASH, for Non Alcoholic Steatohepatisis, This occurs in non-drinkers and leads to cirrhosis of the liver. This type can and sometimes does eventually cause permanent damage to the liver.
Over time, the liver enlarges and the healthy cells are replaced with scar tissue (cirrhosis), which may lead to liver cancer, liver failure or other serious complications.
Obviously, fatty liver disease can grow into a serious condition!
Sadly, with our sedentary lifestyle and bad eating habits, all these types of fatty liver disease are becoming increasingly common.
Do you have fatty liver disease? The big problem is, you may not even know you have it!
What are the Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease?
You might have fatty liver disease if you have any or all of these symptoms:
- Feeling tired
- Losing weight or losing your appetite
- feeling weak
- Feeling confused or having trouble concentrating
In addition, people who suffer from fatty liver disease may also have these symptoms:
- Pain focused in the center or right upper part of the abdomen
- Enlarged liver
- Patches of dark skin discoloration, most often on the neck or underarm area
Sometimes a person with fatty liver disease may be able to diagnose it themselves if the symptoms are evident enough, but in most cases it may be picked up in routine lab tests.
People with fatty liver disease will have elevated liver enzymes, but there is no way to know the progression of the disease except through a painful liver biopsy.
Your doctor will likely say “you have evidence” of this condition.
As you can see above, though, all symptoms are very general. Most of us often feel tired. Often, there is no pain. Nausea, feeling weak, and loss of appetite can be caused by many things. Only by going to a doctor for tests can you pinpoint the cause.
The Fatty Liver Guide
Before I bought it, I saw that The Fatty Liver Diet Guide has been hailed by suffers as the ultimate go-to reference for help in treating or eliminating Fatty Liver Disease. It was either this guide or following a multitude of pamphlets my doctor gave me, which is basically “eat healthy and lose weight” (I bet we all heard this one before!)
I needed something more precise. A detailed roadmap to follow. For half the price of a visit to the doctor, I got it (and it has a money back guarantee).
The guide lays out a concise explanation of what exactly causes Fatty Liver Disease, as well as who is most at risk in developing it. This could be a handy thing to know in order to do a little preventive maintenance and avoid getting it. As the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
For those who already suffer from Fatty Liver Disease, you will find a treasure trove of helpful information inside the guide – everything from eating the right diet to lifestyle changes and various techniques to reverse and manage the condition.
It isn’t a complicated guide that requires someone with a PhD to read and understand. Instead, it lays out a simple, easy to understand and follow process that can help you get back on track to a healthy life. There is a couple technical terms, but these are words you’ll likely here from your doctor, so it’s best to memorize them.
A couple points, though:
Does the Fatty Liver Diet Guide make pie-in-the-sky promises that you can manage or reverse the condition with no effort on your part?
Does the Fatty Liver Diet Guide claim to be a “miracle” that will restore your liver to optimal health simply by reading it?
It does require an effort on your part and a sincere commitment to make the diet and lifestyle changes suggested in the guide. But, one bonus is that the process is customizable to you and your lifestyle; meaning that you can follow it in an individualized way that will still deliver healthy results.
What’s In the Guide?
The book begins by talking about the liver – what it is and what it does. You can skip this section, but it’s good to know what’s up with your liver and why you need to change your lifestyle habits. By the way, it’s good for both types of the disease – alcoholic and non-alcoholic.
Dorothy then explains how the liver processes the fat in your body. This should answer your questions on why your liver gets fatty in the first place.
The next section discusses the disease itself … and the reasons why you have the disease. She also discusses the symptoms, and how doctors can determine if you have a fatty liver. Except for an actual liver biopsy, doctors can only guess at the stage of the condition based on certain signs in a blood test.
You shouldn’t need a liver biopsy (which is painful and invasive anyway – a surgeon has to actually remove a piece of your liver) – for most patients, the possibility of having the disease is enough to begin treatment.
The Treatment of Fatty Liver Disease
There is no magic pill to treat this disease. My doctor said “diet and exercise.”
When I bought this book, I wanted to know a plan of action – and fortunately, the guide delivers this. Not quite a step-by-step plan, this does lay out what you need to do, and then gives you a plan.
Step 1: Vitamins and Mineral supplements to begin taking
This is to help heal the liver. Also, what vitamins and minerals to avoid. What I didn’t realize is that an excess of certain vitamins can make my condition worse!
Step 2: Developing a meal plan
Dorothy goes through a comprehensive list of what foods to take, what to eat in moderation, and what to avoid. She then provides you with sample meal plans for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as snacks. She has created for you a seven-day meal plan that maximizes the antioxidant properties of the food you will eat to help heal your liver.
While alcohol must, of course, be completely removed for patients with alcoholic fatty liver disease, whose with the non-alcoholic version must still limit themselves. Thankfully, I’m a red wine drinker, but I cut out all alcohol anyway, and only drink one glass on the weekend.
For those with the alcoholic version of the disease: you MUST stop all drinking now. Forever! I read in a forum about someone’s sister who had this disease, and stopped drinking. Her liver then went back to normal. But then she had a beer here, and a beer there. A year later, she died of liver failure, at the age of 37. What a horrible thing to read!
Step 3: Exercise plan
You MUST begin exercising. Even if it’s just a daily walk, you have to begin doing more to help lose excess weight. However, she warns not to lose weight too fast – this will put your body into starvation mode, which actually worsens your condition.
- The book then goes into alternative medicine and treatments, such as:
- Directions and a recipe for a liver flush, using epsom salts
- herbal supplements such as milk thistle and vitamins
The final third of the book continues with your lifestyle roadmap – tips on exercising, and loads of low-fat and delicious recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.
Some Disappointments …
Don’t think this book is a magic bullet, full of “secrets” and formulas to deliver instant results. It doesn’t, nor did I expect it to. (And I hate those books with the words “secrets” and “miracles” anyway … they sound so scammy.)
However, there are a few shortcomings you should know of before trying this book:
It could be organized a bit better
Though it’s not bad, I was expecting a clearer guide – instead, it is similar to to “get fit and eat better” – however, it does go into detail of what you need to do, and does give a weekly menu plan.
No exact step-by-step roadmap
I was hoping for something along the lines of “Okay, in six weeks, you will be cured. This is exactly what you need to do …”
Instead, the guide gives exercise advice, food and supplement choices, and a large list of recipes. I did follow it, and soon understood why there is no “6 Week Plan.” That’s because everybody who reads this book will be at different stages of the disease. So, for some, it’ll take six weeks of disciplined lifestyle changes to reverse their condition, for others it’ll take six months.
Plus, it’s not like after six weeks you can go back to your bad habits. This is a lifelong change, as your liver is susceptible to new damage if you decide to go back to sitting on the couch every day and go back to a high-fat diet. An occasional greasy meal is probably fine … but not every day.
As with anything else, talk to your doctor, who has a much better idea on your prognosis.
No worksheets or timetables
I was also hoping to have some worksheets and timetables to help me track my progress. I ended up drawing up some myself, though I did print out and pinned up the seven-day meal plan on my fridge. That plan really did help.
So, Is This Guide Right For You?
I would definitely say yes. It’s comprehensive and it gives valuable strategies to help reclaim your health and wellness.
It will teach you how to avoid the foods that are unhealthy for your liver, which foods and supplements you should take to help reverse fatty liver disease, and what lifestyle changes you need to take to get back to health.
Of course, if you aren’t satisfied with the results you’re getting from following the recommendations, you won’t be out a cent because it comes with a 100% money back guarantee. No questions asked, no hassle, no risk.
P.S. Let me know how it works out for you. Luckily, my condition wasn’t too bad, and in three months my doctor gave me a clean bill of health. But I have never gone back to my old eating habits, and I always go for an hour long walk everyday.