Fatty liver disease: the frightening epidemic affecting one in three Australians

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    • Fatty liver disease: the frightening epidemic affecting one in three Australians

      A good reason why we should look after ourselves and not eat so much crap :)

      He said mounting research suggested it may be caused by fructose (a sweetener found in many processed foods) and chemicals known as "advanced glycation end products" (AGEs), which are produced when foods high in protein and fat are fried.


      "We're having more pre-prepared foods which tend to have more AGEs in them and it's making our livers sick," he said.

      Associate Professor Gow said about 5-10 per cent of people experience potentially fatal consequences of it, including cirrhosis, cancer and liver failure. The trouble is, by the time you have these problems, it's usually too late.

      The only treatment is a transplant, and you may not qualify for the procedure or receive a donation in time. The disease can be diagnosed by a blood test which sometimes leads to an ultrasound and biopsy.

      Dr Anthony Rode, a liver specialist at Epworth, said while fatty liver disease is potentially curable with weight loss, only about 20 per cent of his patients lost weight and kept it off. This is despite his clinic including dieticians, psychologists and bariatric surgeons to help people. With no signs of the obesity epidemic slowing, he is worried about how many people would suffer from it in the future.



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