In addition to eliminating alcohol, other lifestyle strategies can help you prevent the development of fatty liver disease. Yes, avoiding alcohol can help prevent damage from fatty liver disease. In alcohol-related fatty liver disease, abstaining from alcohol could help reverse the condition. Generally speaking, the outlook for fatty liver disease is best when treatment begins in the early stages, before fibrosis and cirrhosis.

Although it’s very similar to alcohol-related liver disease (ARLD), NAFLD is not caused by drinking too much alcohol. If detected and managed at an early stage, it’s possible to stop NAFLD getting worse and reduce the amount of fat in your liver. Some studies have found that vitamin E seemed to improve how well some people’s livers worked, but the science is not settled. If you’re interested in trying this supplement, talk to your doctor first.


If you are alcohol-dependent, you may need professional treatment to break your addiction. Cirrhosis of the liver occurs when healthy liver tissue is replaced by scar tissue. This happens when the liver is inflamed and swollen for long periods of time. For example, your doctor may recommend medicine to treat high blood pressure, treat high cholesterol, treat type 2 diabetes and treat obesity. Children and young people with an increased risk of NAFLD (those with type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome) should have an ultrasound scan of their liver every 3 years.

When there is a buildup of fat, it leads to inflammation and in worst cases leads to liver failure as well. A weight loss of approximately 5- 10% of your body mass will certainly improve the condition in patients suffering from NAFLD. It’s estimated that up to 1 in every 3 people in the UK has early stages of NAFLD where there are small amounts of fat in their liver. If you’ve developed complications from cirrhosis, a doctor might recommend additional treatments, such as medications or surgery. If your test results are positive for elevated liver enzymes, a doctor will likely order additional tests to identify the cause of the inflammation.

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Your liver health will likely return to normal within a few weeks of giving birth. If a doctor diagnoses AFLP, they will want to deliver your baby as soon as possible. You might need to receive follow-up care for several days after you give birth.

  • As with other MRI-based studies, insurance coverage is a challenge, as is use in small children.
  • When fibrosis first develops often there are many liver cells that continue to function quite well.
  • Because NAFLD typically causes no symptoms, it is often found when tests done for other reasons point to a liver problem.
  • According to a 2017 research review, NAFLD affects up to 25% to 30% of people in the United States and Europe.
  • If there’s no inflammation or other complications, the condition is known as simple alcoholic fatty liver.

Patients with a higher degree of fibrosis have a higher risk of death, mainly from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and end-stage liver disease. Although there is no consensus on monitoring, it is reasonable for primary care clinicians to initiate intensive lifestyle changes and repeat liver enzyme measurements and ultrasonography in six to 12 months. Fatty liver disease is sometimes called a silent liver disease. This is because it can happen without causing any symptoms. Most people with NAFLD live with fat in their liver without developing liver damage.

Healthy diet and lifestyle

If you often drink more than this, you may experience alcohol withdrawal. Withdrawal from alcohol can be life threatening, so it’s recommended to work with a healthcare professional to manage alcohol withdrawal safely. A first step would be to establish clear nutrition and dietary guidelines for the prevention of NAFLD. Health professionals should be one of the main drivers of nutritional recommendations to prevent and manage NAFLD, especially among patients at higher risk. Several histologic scoring systems have been used to stage fibrosis in chronic liver diseases including NAFLD. Most of them range from F0 (no fibrosis) to F4 (cirrhosis).

how long can you live with non alcoholic fatty liver disease

Although NAFLD occurs in people who do not drink a lot of alcohol, completely cutting out alcohol is strongly advised. Alcohol can worsen the symptoms of NAFLD, leading to further liver damage. Avoiding alcohol can reverse the damage of AFLD and prevent it from developing into more severe liver conditions. If symptoms of alcohol related liver disease you’re diagnosed with NAFLD, further tests may be needed to determine which stage you have. This may involve a special blood test or having another type of ultrasound scan (Fibroscan). Some people may also need a small sample of liver tissue (biopsy) taken using a needle to have it analysed in a laboratory.

This is often referred to as having a “fatty liver.” If fat continues to accumulate, inflammation can result. The amount of time you have to live after your diagnosis depends on your health and how far the disease has progressed. If you have alcoholic liver disease, one of the most important things you can do to increase your lifespan is to quit drinking. Life expectancy with cirrhosis of the liver depends on the stage at diagnosis and the steps you and your healthcare provider take to treat and manage the condition. This article looks at survival rates and life expectancy for people with cirrhosis of the liver.

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