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DEWAP* – AVOID THE “LIVER CRISIS”

Posted Nov 04 2009 10:05pm

By Marie Dufour, RD – Maybe the French know something we don’t. They routinely suffer from “Liver Crisis” after cholesterol-loaded meals (i.e. Daube, Cassoulet), a condition they treat with “La Diète,” a couple days of vegetable broth, steamed vegetables, whole grains and plain rice. We, hamburger and BBQ fans, remain perplex about this strange Gallic illness. But what if there really were a relationship between diet and liver disease?

So says a recent research by Ioannou & al, based on NHANES data. Researchers associated a diet high in cholesterol and protein with increased liver disease risk. However, a diet high in carbohydrates was associated with a decreased risk.

Individuals following a high protein diet were 1/3 more at risk for hospitalization or death due to cirrhosis or liver cancer. Those who consumed the most cholesterol (top quartile) were more than twice as likely to develop cirrhosis or liver cancer than those who consumed the least (bottom quartile.) However, serum cholesterol levels were not associated with disease risk, which means that the liver damage comes from what we eat, not from the cholesterol our body naturally produces.

Interestingly, individuals following a diet high in carbohydrates had a 58% lower risk (HR 0.42).

How do we, then, eat for liver health?

- Drink the least alcohol possible;

- Keep a diet low in cholesterol: avoid processed meats (bacon, sausages, patés, salami), eat egg yolks only occasionally (egg whites are OK), drink non-fat milk (even children after the age of 2), select lean cuts of red meat, eat chicken and fish;

- Keep total protein intake at a moderate level (20-30% of daily calories), selecting mostly plant-based and fish proteins;

- Select grains, fruit and vegetables for at least 50% of daily caloric intake;

- Chose polyunsaturated vegetable oils, and thus avoid the  ”Liver Crisis.”

* Drink And Eat With A Purpose (DEWAP) is the nutrition lifestyle program I have developed for the DOMINO HEALTH FOUNDATION.

Reference: Ioannou GN, et al “Association between dietary nutrient composition and the incidence of cirrhosis or liver cancer in the United States population” Hepatology 2009; 50: 175-84.

Filed under: diet, alcohol, cancer nutrition, diet, healthy eating, liver cancer diet, Liver disease diet, low-carb diet, Marie Dufour RD, Mediterranean Diet, nutrition

By Marie Dufour, RD – Maybe the French know something we don’t. They routinely suffer from “Liver Crisis” after cholesterol-loaded meals (i.e. Daube, Cassoulet), a condition they treat with “La Diète,” a couple days of vegetable broth, steamed vegetables, whole grains and plain rice. We, hamburger and BBQ fans, remain perplex about this strange Gallic illness. But what if there really were a relationship between diet and liver disease?

So says a recent research by Ioannou & al, based on NHANES data. Researchers associated a diet high in cholesterol and protein with increased liver disease risk. However, a diet high in carbohydrates was associated with a decreased risk.

Individuals following a high protein diet were 1/3 more at risk for hospitalization or death due to cirrhosis or liver cancer. Those who consumed the most cholesterol (top quartile) were more than twice as likely to develop cirrhosis or liver cancer than those who consumed the least (bottom quartile.) However, serum cholesterol levels were not associated with disease risk, which means that the liver damage comes from what we eat, not from the cholesterol our body naturally produces.

Interestingly, individuals following a diet high in carbohydrates had a 58% lower risk (HR 0.42).

How do we, then, eat for liver health?

- Drink the least alcohol possible;

- Keep a diet low in cholesterol: avoid processed meats (bacon, sausages, patés, salami), eat egg yolks only occasionally (egg whites are OK), drink non-fat milk (even children after the age of 2), select lean cuts of red meat, eat chicken and fish;

- Keep total protein intake at a moderate level (20-30% of daily calories), selecting mostly plant-based and fish proteins;

- Select grains, fruit and vegetables for at least 50% of daily caloric intake;

- Chose polyunsaturated vegetable oils, and thus avoid the  ”Liver Crisis.”

* Drink And Eat With A Purpose (DEWAP) is the nutrition lifestyle program I have developed for the DOMINO HEALTH FOUNDATION.

Reference: Ioannou GN, et al “Association between dietary nutrient composition and the incidence of cirrhosis or liver cancer in the United States population” Hepatology 2009; 50: 175-84.

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