Fatty liver is a common problem these days. It is a situation when there is excessive fat build-up in the liver, mostly due to sedentary lifestyle. Fatty liver disease can be caused by mostly two reasons - unhealthy diet and high alcohol intake. NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease) occurs when the liver becomes "marbled" with fat, sometimes due to excessive intake of saturated fats. If it is not treated in time, it can lead to serious life-threatening liver disease, cirrhosis or even liver cancer. If the findings of a new research are to be believed then eating some cruciferous vegetables could help fight NAFLD.
The research published in the journal Hepatology claims that cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, kale, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts contain a natural compound called indole that may help control non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). The finding could prove to be a breakthrough in framing new treatments or preventive measures for fatty liver disease.
Principal investigator for the study Chaodong Wu, Faculty Fellow at Texas A&M AgriLife Research in the US, said, "Based on this research, we believe healthy foods with high capacity for indole production are essential for preventing NAFLD and are beneficial for improving the health of those with it. This is another example where altering the diet can help prevent or treat disease and improve the well-being of the individual."
The team of researchers studied the effects of indole on 137 Chinese people suffering with fatty livers. The researchers found out that people with a higher body mass index seemed to have lower levels of indole in their blood.
"Foods with a high capacity of indole production or medicines that mimic its effects may be new therapies for treatment of NAFLD. Prevention is another important aspect to consider," Wu added.