What Not To Eat When Your Liver Is Inflamed?

Inflamed liver means there is inflammation or swelling of liver due to certain insults to it, which could be due to virus, infection, toxins, alcohol or any other cause. Liver has several functions in the body including digestion of food by production of bile, detoxification of alcohol and drugs, boosting immunity, metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins converting them into materials that are useful biologically. It is also essential for production of proteins and blood clotting factors and storage of several nutrients such as glucose, vitamins (such as A, D, E, K and B12), minerals (iron and copper) and fatty acids.

What Are The Causes Of Liver Inflammation?

The several causes of liver inflammation include chronic alcoholism, viral infection (such as hepatitis A, B, C, D and E), bacterial infection (such as infection from Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Treponema palladium, Salmonella typhimurium, Yersinia pestis), protozoan infection (Entamoeba histolytica, Leishmania donovani, Plasmodium species, Toxoplasma gondii), parasitic infection (Fasciola hepatica blood fluke, Schistosoma species). Certain drugs are also responsible for liver inflammation such as paracetamol. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, metabolic disorders such as Wilson’s disease, bile duct or gall bladder obstruction and certain autoimmune disorders such as autoimmune hepatitis, biliary cholangitis may also cause inflammation of the liver.

What Not To Eat When Your Liver Is Inflamed?

What Not To Eat When Your Liver Is Inflamed?

Thus, it becomes crucial to eat foods that are healthy for the body as well as liver so that liver inflammation is reduced and liver goes back to its normal size and functioning. However, certain foods should be avoided when liver is inflamed and these are:

Alcohol: In moderation, alcohol does not have much effect on liver when liver is healthy, but when consumed excessively and regularly the workload on liver increases leading to alcoholic fatty liver disease and also liver cirrhosis in the long run causing scarring and death of liver cells. In addition, paracetamol should be avoided with alcohol that precipitates liver damage. When liver is inflamed alcohol should be avoided completely.

Fatty Foods: The intake of fats should be limited as too much fat increases the chance of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease as well as obesity. The daily fat intake should not be more than 20 to 35% of total daily calorie. Unhealthy fats contain saturated fats that are hard to digest and these include processed, fried and fast foods and these should be avoided completely in liver inflammation.

Salt: The daily intake of salt should be around 1500 mg. It is generally not bad, but there are certain foods that contain too much salt such as soups, canned foods and fast foods. These foods contain too much sodium and when consumed in excess they cause liver damage. Excess salt causes fluid retention in the body, so it should be avoided in liver inflammation.

Proteins: They are good for health, but when consumed in excess they can cause liver to malfunction and also leads to other diseases such as gout. Proteins should be balanced with carbohydrate intake and vegetables. In liver inflammation meat, steaks, turkey and bacon should be avoided, but lean proteins can be eaten such as chicken and fish.

Foods Rich in Vitamin A: Vitamin A has many health benefits such as they are good for eyes, skin and normal growth of the body. However, excessive vitamin A consumption can lead to its toxicity as well as liver failure. Thus, vitamin A intake should be moderated in liver inflammation.

Soda and Sugar: Carbonated drinks have a lot of sugar and caffeine. Excess sugar is converted into glucose and stored in liver as glycogen, but when excessive sugar is consumed it can damage the liver. Excess sugar also leads to greater risk for obesity. It is better to avoid simple carbohydrates such as donuts and cookies.

It is better to stay healthy and avoid the above foods and follow a healthy diet for optimal liver function and for liver to recover from inflammation.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:November 29, 2018

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