Fatty Liver Pain
Fatty Liver Pain , 11-09-2011 12:26 AM


Junior Low-Carber


Hello everyone!

I'm curious if anyone else has experienced what I have been experiencing lately. I have had fatty liver for several years now (brought on first by nine months on steroids and high triglycerides). I've read the study that suggests that low carb mobilizes liver fat. Here lately, I've noticed that when my diet becomes more ketogenic, I experience increased liver discomfort - it is in the liver, not the gall bladder btw. It usually lasts for a few days and then subsides. It's not PAIN but rather a gnawing ache - I've experienced it off and on for a few years.

My theory is that I'm having the symptoms because the keto diet is mobilizing liver fat. Of course, that might be wishful thinking. Anyway, just interested if anyone else has had similar things happen. I'll be having my next lipid/glucose profile check in a few weeks. I'll probably ask for a liver ultrasound to see if there's any change there as well.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Thanks!
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 11-09-2011 01:32 AM


Junior Low-Carber


Piano Man, the good news is that I have personal experience that low carb helps with fatty liver. I had a cat scan a few months ago, and instead of the report saying there is a lot of fatty liver, it said there is some fatty liver. Woohoo. And I haven't stuck to plan over the years either. I sometime find I had that aching pain too, I dont know if its anything to do with the fat mobilizing though. Never thought of that.
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 11-09-2011 01:00 PM


Expert Low-Carber


I don't know about the pain, but, according to Dr Michael Eades (I think), coconut oil is supposed to be good at addressing fatty liver.


And according to Chris Masterjohn, choline is supposed to do the same. Good sources are liver, and egg yolks.
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 11-09-2011 10:36 PM


Junior Low-Carber


Thanks for the replies.

I'm hoping to see a reduction in the liver fat at my next ultrasound as well, ScrappyKat.

Interesting point on the coconut oil, montmorency. I added 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per day to my diet about a month ago.

Again, thanks for the feedback!
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 11-09-2011 11:03 PM


Advanced Low-Carber


Milk thistle, taken it for years it works. Says my mom who has suffered with fatty liver and pain for 30 years.

11/5/2011 ***starting weight 313... goal is 170
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RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 11-12-2011 01:00 AM


Expert Low-Carber


It seems that krill oil may also help with fatty liver (in addition to its seeming many benefits):


http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articl..._DNL_art_2

Transcript:

http://mercola.fileburst.com/PDF/ExpertI...ll_Oil.pdf

It's a shame that Dr Moerck is such a sat-fat phobe. Dr Mercola didn't challenge him on this directly, although he did interject that fructose was a contributor to fatty liver.


I used to be a cod-liver-oil fan, but unfortunately, the stuff we get here is messed around with, with the natural vitamin A and D taken out, and synthetics put back in. One can buy it online, imported (at a high price), but even then I think you have to be a bit careful.

Sounds like krill oil might be a safer bet (although still expensive, no doubt).
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 11-25-2011 07:32 PM


Junior Low-Carber



I'm curious if anyone else has experienced what I have been experiencing lately. I have had fatty liver for several years now (brought on first by nine months on steroids and high triglycerides). I've read the study that suggests that low carb mobilizes liver fat. Here lately, I've noticed that when my diet becomes more ketogenic, I experience increased liver discomfort - it is in the liver, not the gall bladder btw. It usually lasts for a few days and then subsides. It's not PAIN but rather a gnawing ache - I've experienced it off and on for a few years.

My theory is that I'm having the symptoms because the keto diet is mobilizing liver fat. Of course, that might be wishful thinking. Anyway, just interested if anyone else has had similar things happen. I'll be having my next lipid/glucose profile check in a few weeks. I'll probably ask for a liver ultrasound to see if there's any change there as well.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Thanks!



Well, I just got my bloodwork results in. I did two tests. The first was around 8 weeks of a USDA approved low fat, high carb diet. The second is about 8 weeks of a low carb (about 20g a day) ketogenic diet. The results were what I expected although I'm puzzled about why my glucose increased.

1st test in May
2nd test in November

Glucose 102 to 104
Total Cholesterol 158 to 195
Triglycerides 346 to 204
HDL 22 to 28
LDL 67 to 126
VLDL 69 to 41

Liver function was fine. I'm still awaiting the ultrasound results to see if there's any change with the fatty liver.

Final detail: I added 2T of coconut oil per day. I also take 20mg of Simvistatin a day. Supplements include Vitamin D, Choline & Inositol, Magnesium, Fish Oil, Niacin and a Multi-Vitamin. I did no exercise during the 8 weeks. I lost only 5 lbs. in the 8 weeks so any change in the numbers was probably not due to significant weight loss.

So, that's my n=1 for this round. I think the next experiment will be after I've went down another 25 lbs. I'm becoming convinced that I need to be leaner if I'm going to get on top of these numbers.

Best to all!

EDIT TO ADD

The ultrasound results are in. The lab report states, "If there is hepatic steatosis (fatty liver) it is very mild."

This is a marked improvement from my previous ultrasounds where the report stated that there was obvious fatty liver present.

CONCLUSIONS (for me)

USDA recommended high carb diet = Low total cholesterol, low HDL, low LDL, high VLDL and high triglycerides.

Low carb, ketogenic diet = Higher total cholesterol, higher HDL, big spike in LDL, lower VLDL and lower triglycerides.

The increased fasting glucose was the biggest disappointment. I won't say it is a deal-breaker, but I don't like dancing around the pre-diabetic range.

NEXT STEPS

Next up, I will be lowering my BMI. I carry about 10% excess bodyfat. I suspect I'll never get on top of these numbers without getting leaner. Time to hit the weights and see what happens next round.

Thanks for enduring my posts!
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 12-02-2011 05:26 PM


Expert Low-Carber


From 102 to 104 in fasting glucose is not really significant, in my opinion. From what I understand the range of error is greater than that (like 5-10%), so this is well within that. Do you check your blood sugar yourself? How does it compare?
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 12-02-2011 07:45 PM


Junior Low-Carber


Hi Heyitsdenise,

Agreed, 102 to 104 is not earth shattering. I usually test in the mid-to-high 90s. I didn't do an HbA1C this time, but I usually measure right in the middle of the normal range on that. I do periodically test my blood sugar at home, usually once a week on Saturdays. Some interesting background:

My first week on the low carb-keto diet, my fasting glucose was 85 - about as low as it has ever been. Then each week, it went back up to the low-to-mid 90s. It remained there until the 7th week. At the end of week seven, my fasting glucose was around 110! Now, here's the interesting part - I ate breakfast with some added carbs (eggs, cheese, cinnamon-raisin bread and english toffee cappuccino). Plenty of carbs and sugar with that meal! I took my blood sugar again one hour later and it was a whopping 105! Kinda strange that my blood sugar actually decreased when I expected it to increase.

So, I suspect that the keto diet tends to make me a bit more insulin resistant which results in high fasting glucose. I might also be experiencing a bit of the dawn phenomenon causing the high fasting glucose.

This diet was the first time I actually achieved ketosis. Ketosis was a bit strange for me. I never measured high ketones on the test strips (no higher than 40 mg/dL). However, I always had a very recognizable symptom - a burning sensation in my sinuses at the back of my nose. I felt like I was always smelling something in the air like an electrical fire or what-not. One strange thing was that the symptoms would go away while I was at 20g of carbs. If I would eat carbs (like bread or a granola bar, for example), the burning sensation in my nose would come back within 30 minutes. I suspect that my body might do better on a more moderate carb diet in the 50-100g a day range.


Right now, I'm 25 lbs. away from my normal weight. My next experiment will be to lose the 25 lbs. and repeat the two trials.

Best regards!
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 12-07-2011 12:10 AM


Expert Low-Carber


I don't know if you've looked at the various articles on Chris Kresser's site about blood glucose.

They are very interesting.

He rates post-prandial BG as being a more important indicator than either FBG or HbA1c.

I see you've taken some post-prandial readings, but have a look at the method Chris recommends. It's pretty simple.



Are you committed to taking that statin by the way?



Anyway, it's great that you seem to have essentially got rid of the fatty liver.
RE: Fatty Liver Pain , 12-07-2011 01:19 AM


Junior Low-Carber


Thanks for pointing me to the Chris Kresser site, montmorency. Very interesting indeed. He seems to confirm my suspicion that my higher FG was probably from the low carb-keto diet.

I did look up my HbA1C tests for the past few years. All were with fasting glucose in the higher 90s. The HbA1C test results ranged from 5.1 to 5.3. Sounds like I'm on target there! Also, per Mr. Kresser, I don't seem to get post-prandial glucose readings (1-2 hours after eating) that are ever above 130. That's a bit over his recommended 120, but staying above 120 is rare for me - at least at the times I've checked it. I do keep a watch on this though since my family history is working against me. My dad developed Type 2 diabetes in his 30s and the disease has slowly ravaged his body. He had a heart attack followed by triple-bypass in his early 50s.

As far as the statin, I've been on the 20mg dose of simvastatin for about 3 years. I agreed to take a lower dose provided that I didn't start having side effects. So far, no side effects. My doctor and I agreed that taking a small dose isn't a bad idea from a prevention standpoint. If I can ever get my numbers in a decent trend, I'll lean toward coming off of it, hence my efforts toward that goal.

Thanks!