The liver, one of the most vital organs and the largest gland in our body plays a crucial role in various metabolic processes, including detoxification, protein synthesis, and bile production. Unfortunately, there are a variety of conditions that affect the normal functioning of the liver and these affect millions worldwide. Liver diseases are broadly classified into two types, i.e. acute and chronic liver diseases. The latter is marked by gradual and long-term damage to the liver that occurs over months or years. Fortunately, most of these conditions can be managed with proper treatment and care, offered at the best liver transplant hospitals in India.
Apart from medication and treatment, people who have been diagnosed with chronic liver diseases can adhere to some simple lifestyle modifications that will help to take the load off their liver, slow down the progress of damage, and help in the effective management of the symptoms, enabling the patients to lead a better life. Because learning about these practices, let’s know about some of the most common chronic liver ailments that can affect anyone.
Types of Chronic Liver Disease
1. Hepatitis B and C: Chronic viral hepatitis is a leading cause of liver disease worldwide. Hepatitis B and C viruses can infect the liver and cause inflammation, leading to scarring (fibrosis and Cirrhosis) over time.
2. Alcoholic Liver Disease: Excessive and prolonged alcohol consumption can damage liver cells, leading to alcoholic liver disease. This condition can range from fatty liver (steatosis) to alcoholic hepatitis and eventually cirrhosis.
3. Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD): NAFLD is characterized by the accumulation of fat in the liver in individuals who do not consume excessive alcohol.
4. Autoimmune Hepatitis: In autoimmune hepatitis, the body's immune system mistakenly attacks and damages the liver, leading to inflammation and scarring.
5. Primary Biliary Cholangitis (PBC): PBC is a chronic autoimmune disease that primarily affects the small bile ducts within the liver, leading to impaired bile flow and damage to liver cells.
Tips to manage chronic liver disease from the best liver specialist in India
1. Follow Medical Advice: If you have been diagnosed with chronic liver disease, it is essential to follow your healthcare provider's advice diligently. Attend regular check-ups, take prescribed medications, and follow lifestyle recommendations.
2. Maintain a Healthy Diet: A balanced diet is crucial for supporting liver health. Cut down on the consumption of processed foods, saturated fats, and sugars. You can rather include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins in your diet.
3. Avoid Alcohol and Smoking: If you have chronic liver disease, it is imperative to abstain from alcohol completely, as it can exacerbate liver damage. Additionally, smoking can worsen liver conditions, so quitting smoking is highly recommended.
4. Stay Active: Regular physical activity can help improve liver function and reduce the risk of complications. Consult your doctor to determine a suitable exercise routine based on your condition.
5. Manage Weight: If you are overweight or obese, losing weight gradually through a combination of a healthy diet and exercise can be beneficial for your liver health.
6. Be Cautious with Medications and Supplements: Some medications and herbal supplements can be harmful to the liver. Always inform your healthcare provider about your liver condition before starting any new medications or supplements.
7. Get Vaccinated: If you have chronic liver disease, consider getting vaccinated against hepatitis A and B, as these infections can be particularly dangerous for individuals with compromised liver function.
8. Watch for Signs of Complications: Be vigilant about any new or worsening symptoms. These may include jaundice, unexplained weight loss, easy bruising, or swelling in the your abdomen or legs.
9. Join Support Groups: Living with chronic liver disease can be emotionally challenging. Consider joining support groups or connecting with others who are facing similar circumstances to share experiences and receive encouragement.
Living with chronic liver disease requires careful management and lifestyle adjustments. You can get the best advice from experts from the best liver specialist hospital in India. By understanding the condition, following medical advice, and adopting a healthy lifestyle, individuals can improve their liver health and enhance their overall well-being. Regular monitoring, adherence to treatment plans, and a positive mindset can go a long way in living a fulfilling life despite the challenges posed by chronic liver disease.
Dr. Ankur Garg, Head of the Department & Senior Consultant
Digestive & Liver Diseases, Liver TransplantBook an Appointment