A fatty liver and your health
The cost of obesity to an individual's health includes potential additional damage to their physiological systems, structures, and organs like the liver.
NAFLD has increased with increasing obesity.
The liver becomes infiltrated with fat associated with obesity, diabetes or metabolic syndrome rather than associated with high alcohol intake. Like liver damage from alcohol, NAFLD may progress into cirrhosis, even death from liver disease.
Worldwide prevalence may range from 9% to 37%, with the United States averaging 20% of the population with NAFLD (Wikipedia).
Effects of green tea
A new study tested green tea extract (GTE) with obese mice and lean mice.
After six weeks of green tea extract, the body weights of the obese mice were 23-25% lower and the body weights of the lean mice were 11-20% lower than control mice not fed green tea extract.
Fat in the liver was reduced by green tea extract in a dose dependent manner.
Green tea helped protect against liver injury probably by reducing serum alanine aminotransferase activity by 30-41% and reducing aspartate aminotransferase activity by 22-33%.
Aspartate aminotransferase is also called serum glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase or SGOT. It is an important enzyme for amino acid metabolism found throughout the body. Blood tests for this enzyme may be used to help differentiate liver problems like inflammation from heart attacks, pancreas or kidney problems, trauma, or other conditions.
Vitamin E, Vitamin C, and adiponectin-mediated fat metabolism were not significantly affected (Bruno RS et al, Green tea extract protects leptin-deficient, spontaneously obese mice from hepatic steatosis and injury, Journal of Nutrition, February 2008, p323-331).
Researchers concluded that green tea extract protected the liver from obesity by limiting the accumulation of lipids in the liver.
Green tea is known to block the absorption of fatty lipids in the intestine, thus increasing the direct elimination of fat before it is absorbed.
These studies are considered preliminary.
Additional research is needed to determine all the biochemical pathways involved in green tea's protection against a fatty liver from obesity.
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This page last updated by Sharon Jones.
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