Health Desk: 14 January 2018: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is defined medically as macrovesicular steatosis, or abnormal retention of lipids (fats) sufficient and large enough to distort or replace the nuclei of liver cells among those who consume less than 20 grams (.7 ounces) of alcohol per day.
NAFLD, unknown prior to 1980, has become our largest liver health issue nationally and throughout most industrialized nations. Fatty liver disease affects metabolism and usually manifests as obesity and insulin resistance, which are direct co-factors for type 2 diabetes. It can also progress to inflammation of the liver, or non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), leading to cirrhosis.
Ironically, a saturated fat (virgin coconut oil) may prove to be the safest and most effective treatment for NAFLD according to a study published recently in the Journal of the Science and Agriculture of Food.
The study, “Virgin coconut oil reverses hepatic steatosis by restoring redox homeostasis and lipid metabolism in male Wistar rats,” noted in its background statement that more nutraceutical offerings are being sought for reversing fatty liver disease.
Recent Study Proving Virgin Coconut Oil Efficacy and Safety for Reversing NAFLD.
The researchers noted that earlier studies had demonstrated virgin coconut oil could help prevent NAFLD. This new study intended to see if virgin coconut oil could also reverse existing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. (Pharmaceutical medications, with side effects, are not working to stem the tide of rising NAFLD.)
After four weeks on a high fructose diet, the rats developed non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or hepatosteotosis. This was confirmed by observing the rats’ hyperglycemia (high blood sugar), reduced glucose tolerance (medical term for a zone between high blood sugar and diabetes), dyslipidemia (high blood lipids – triglycerides, etc.,) and hepatic macrovesicles (lipid displacements of liver cell nuclei).