Recently, during a Skype session with a client of mine that lives abroad, I heard a very important question. My dear client said "Doctor, I have no symptoms. "What's that liver fat I've been diagnosed with? "Shouldn't it have given any signs of existence?" This question got me thinking, so I decided to make a video with the 10 most common questions that I hear regarding liver fat. One. What are the symptoms? It is estimated that a large part of the people among us, probably a lot of you, have liver fat. It's expected that no one, or hardly anyone of you, has any symptoms that indicate this. Symptoms appear only when the disease has significantly progressed, when our ability to treat it is much more limited. Two. What test shows it? The vast majority of the people diagnosed with liver fat find this out after an ultrasound, usually for some symptoms that have nothing to do with liver fat. More rarely do we find it after a CT or MRI scan of the abdomen or the chest. Three. What causes it? When I was studying medicine, 30 years ago, we believed that liver fat was caused by the excessive consumption of alcohol. In the '90s, liver fat was more common in people that drank a lot than in people that ate a lot. Today, the opposite is true. The vast majority of the people diagnosed with liver fat eat a lot of unhealthy foods. Obviously, liver fat may also be caused by a combination of these. Four. What are the risk factors that favor its occurrence? Besides alcohol, which we mentioned earlier, other important factors that increase the risk of liver fat are increased weight, unhealthy diet, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes mellitus and insulin resistance, increased triglycerides and increased blood cholesterol, and sleep apnea. More rarely may it be associated with certain medication, exposure to toxins, and a form of chronic viral hepatitis. Five. Can it be discovered by a blood test? It usually can't. Most people suffering from liver fat have absolutely normal transaminases, which are the enzymes that increase when there's some liver damage. Six. Is it reversible? It usually is. Most people suffering from liver fat either consume an excessive amount of alcohol or are overweight and follow an unhealthy diet. In the case of excessive consumption of alcohol, quitting alcohol usually reverses the process. In the case of increased weight and unhealthy diet, a healthy diet that leads to weight reduction suffices to make the problem disappear. However, this happens if the intervention comes relatively early. Seven. When is it too late? It's never too late for someone to take care of their health. But the optimal results will come if you intervene early. If you let the disease progress, it may reach a point over the years where it can be reversed only a little. You'd better start taking care of yourselves as early as possible, namely the day after you find out that you have liver fat. Eight. What does "healthy diet" mean? The term "healthy diet" is misunderstood, because a healthy diet is not the same for everyone. A healthy diet is different for each one of us, but what we can be sure of is that a healthy diet guarantees one, a normal weight, two, normal cholesterol and triglycerides, although this is rarely not possible only through a healthy diet, three, low insulin and blood sugar, four, low uric acid and urea. This means that if you are overweight, by definition, the diet you follow is not the ideal one for your body. It may be a great diet for someone else, but it's not for you. It may include very healthy foods, but these may not be ideal for you. This is one of the main reasons why you'll hear a lot of people having been benefited from totally different diets. And what they say may indeed be true. However, what you should understand is that this diet is the ideal one for them, not for everyone. Nine. I've read something about fructose and liver fat. What really happens there? All our body cells use glucose for energy. The only cells that are able to use fructose are the liver cells. Neither our muscles nor our brain are able to use fructose if it's not transformed into glucose. As a result, if you consume large amounts of fructose, it will be stored in the liver, with unpleasant consequences for your health. Fruits contain a small amount of fructose, and it's the only sensible way to take fructose, while sugar is the worst way to take fructose. Another really bad idea is to drink juice, especially from a juicer. Ten. Is there any food or herb that removes fat from the liver? There are some herbs that help, but you can't exclusively rely on these to solve this problem. You should take care of your diet on the whole. These are the 10 most common questions that I hear in my office and through my online sessions with patients that live outside Athens and need my medical advice. The most important part of my job is to work with patients and clients that are looking for the best possible diet in order to have the best possible health. However, we often use a series of herbs that help treat liver fat, and I've posted a video about this that you should watch, if you're interested. You can see it now on my right. Thank you very much.