Can Fatty Liver Turn into Liver Cancer? What are the Hazards of Fatty Liver?


Fatty liver, an increasingly common condition in modern society, is gradually becoming a hidden threat to human health. This article will delve into the causes, hazards, and the association between fatty liver and liver cancer, reminding everyone to pay attention to fatty liver and prioritize a healthy lifestyle.

Can Fatty Liver Turn into Liver Cancer? What are the Hazards of Fatty Liver?

1. Causes of Fatty Liver: Fatty liver, as the name suggests, refers to a condition where the liver has an excessive amount of fat. Under normal circumstances, the liver contains a certain proportion of fat. However, when the fat content exceeds 5% of the liver’s weight, it is diagnosed as fatty liver. The causes of fatty liver are diverse and include:

  1. Improper diet: High-fat, high-sugar, high-calorie dietary habits can lead to the accumulation of fat in the liver.
  2. Lack of exercise: Insufficient physical activity can slow down fat metabolism in the body, leading to fatty liver.
  3. Alcohol consumption: Long-term excessive alcohol consumption can damage the liver and cause the accumulation of fat.
  4. Obesity: Obesity is a significant factor in fatty liver, and excess body weight increases the risk of fatty liver.
  5. Diabetes: Insulin resistance in diabetes patients can lead to fatty liver.
  6. Medication side effects: Certain medications such as hormones and antiviral drugs may cause fatty liver.

2. Hazards of Fatty Liver: Fatty liver not only affects liver function but may also lead to a series of serious diseases, including:

  1. Viral hepatitis: Fatty liver patients have weakened immunity, making them susceptible to viral hepatitis.
  2. Cirrhosis: Prolonged fatty liver can lead to liver cell damage, fibrosis, and eventually develop into cirrhosis.
  3. Liver cancer: Fatty liver is a significant risk factor for liver cancer, especially in China, where the incidence of liver cancer among fatty liver patients is rising year by year.
  4. Cardiovascular diseases: Fatty liver is closely related to cardiovascular diseases, increasing the risk of cardiovascular diseases in patients.
  5. Diabetes: Fatty liver can induce or worsen diabetes, creating a vicious cycle.

3. Association between Fatty Liver and Liver Cancer: In recent years, more and more studies have shown a close association between fatty liver and liver cancer. The incidence of liver cancer is significantly higher in fatty liver patients than in the normal population. So, how does fatty liver evolve into liver cancer?

  1. Fatty liver causes liver cell damage: Prolonged fatty liver leads to the accumulation of fat inside liver cells, causing cell damage, inflammation, and fibrosis.
  2. Progression of fibrosis: After liver cell damage, the liver undergoes repair, producing fibrous tissue. Prolonged fibrosis can lead to cirrhosis.
  3. Cirrhosis triggers liver cancer: Cirrhosis is a crucial precursor lesion to liver cancer. During the repair process, the risk of gene mutations in liver cells increases, leading to the development of liver cancer.

4. Prevention and Treatment: Faced with the health risk of fatty liver, how should we prevent and treat it?

  1. Healthy diet: Maintain a diet low in fat, sugar, and calories, and consume foods rich in fiber, such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.
  2. Adequate exercise: Engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, such as brisk walking, swimming, cycling, etc.
  3. Control weight: Maintain a healthy weight to avoid obesity.
  4. Limit alcohol consumption: Drink alcohol in moderation or quit drinking to reduce the burden on the liver.
  5. Regular check-ups: Detect fatty liver early, monitor liver function indicators like transaminases, blood lipids, etc.
  6. Medication treatment: Under the guidance of a doctor, use medications to treat fatty liver, such as insulin sensitizers, antioxidants, etc.

Conclusion: Fatty liver, as a common liver disease, should not be underestimated. By adjusting lifestyle, maintaining a healthy diet, and engaging in moderate exercise, we can prevent the occurrence of fatty liver. For those already suffering from fatty liver, active treatment and regular check-ups are essential to prevent the deterioration of the condition. Pay attention to fatty liver, care for liver health, and let’s start now.

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