Monday, March 10, 2014

TV, video game, junk food expose kids to liver diseases

Long hours in front of television, video games replacing sports in the park and junk food has exposed one in six children to fatty liver disease, according to doctors.

The condition -- a condition in which liver gains 5-10 per cent more fat than the weight of the organ -- was used to be prevalent among adults but now children are increasingly falling to the disease.
Not only excessive consumption of alcohol but obesity, sedentary lifestyle, and eating junk food are major causes of fatty liver disease.
Fatty Liver Disease is of two types - Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
While the former is caused due to the excessive consumption of alcohol, the latter is caused because of obesity, consumption of excessive junk food and lack of exercise.
Office routine and hectic work timings have pushed 25-year-old Manas (who goes by his first name) to overlook his health. He shifted to Delhi five months back and since then his lifestyle has completely changed. No home cooked-food, wrong dietary habits and lack of exercises led to trouble in his liver.
“Due to my work schedule, I hardly performed any physical exercise and I used to order food from outside daily,” said Manas, a resident of Rohini.
“We found fatty liver during the investigation but there was no history of alcohol or smoking. The reports suggested that his food habits were quite bad,” said Dr Rajesh Upadhyay, senior consultant, gastroenterology, Max super-speciality hospital, Shalimar Bagh.
After one month, when Manas visited the doctor again for his reports, the healthier lifestyle adopted by him had begun to show results.
“Every morning I go for a 15-minute brisk walk and started cooking at home,” said Manas.
Change your lifestyle
Doctors say, a healthy lifestyle is a sure way of preventing fatty liver. Also, people with a history of diabetes, thyroid, high cholesterol and obesity are more likely to have fatty liver.

“If one is suffering with fatty liver disease at an early age, there are chances that ten years down the line, he/she might suffer from diabetes, heart disease and blood pressure,” said Dr SK Sarin, director, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences.

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