Specialists from Spanish Gastroenterology Foundation (FEAD) Determine Cirrhosis is “the formation of scarring in the liver around areas of liver tissue,” which changes the normal structure of this organ.
It follows this The liver cannot do its job of purifying the blood And its natural production of protein and other substances.
There can be several factors behind this digestive disease, such as:
Infections by Lever Inflammation seriously
But the truth is that In the vast majority of cases, alcohol and obesity are the factors that most often cause cirrhosis.
So it is as he indicated Dr. Joan ColumbusDeputy Director General of Addictions, HIVITS and Viral Hepatitis Agency Public health in Catalonia, Alcohol is “responsible for more than 50% of cases of cirrhosis.”
Cirrhosis can lead to malnutrition
When the liver is not working properly, Patients with cirrhosis usually suffer from malnutrition as the body cannot obtain necessary nutrients.
the The most common signs of malnutrition She, as he pointed out Dr. Francisca YanezFEAD specialist and nutritionist at the Gastroenterology Unit of Val d'Hebron University Hospital:
Logical weight loss.
Lack of appetite
Loss of muscle mass, especially in the face, arms and thighs.
Greater frequency of infection.
The patient needs more time to heal from any wound.
Any of these signs should prompt the patient to consult a specialist doctor to begin with A diet aimed at restoring nutrient levels In this way improving the functioning of the liver, Prevent infections and complications.
Nutritional advice for patients with cirrhosis
Despite following a specific diet To prevent or reverse malnutrition caused by cirrhosis They need to be tailored to each patient, and Dr. Yanez offers some of them General recommendations In the event that this disease is patisca.
The first and basic one is always to choose one Healthy food rich in fiber.
naturally, Avoid consuming alcohol.
Regarding the amount of food, the specialist recommends one of them The optimal daily intake is 30 to 35 calories per kilogram for cirrhosis patients of normal weight (For example, for a 70 kg man, this equates to a total intake of 2,100-2,450 calories per day.) If the patient has any complications or is obese, the amount of calories must be proportional to each case.
- Eat foods rich in protein. As one of consequences Malnutrition Muscle mass is lost, and protein intake is essential. Karen From beef, pork, chicken, tito, rabbit, Fish, eggs and dairy products They are a source of protein, although they can also be found in many other foods such as dairy products (especially in fresh cheeses and processed and semi-processed cheeses). Or plant proteins Contains tempeh, cooked edamame, seitan, whole grain flakes, whole grain bread, vegetables Or dried fruits.
- Eat between 4 to 6 meals throughout the day. In this way, the patient's nutritional needs are met and the time spent fasting is reduced.
- Eat a light snack before bed. In line with avoiding long periods of fasting and “reducing the use of muscle protein,” the nutritionist recommends Eat something rich in carbohydrates and protein before playing the guitar.
Should be avoided Consumption of simple sugars, saturated fats and ultra-processed fats. It is better to choose foods rich in monounsaturated fats (extra virgin olive oil, avocado, olive, vegetable oils, peanuts, soybeans, etc.) and polyunsaturated fats (blue fish: salmon, mackerel, tuna, anchovies, sardines. In addition to dried fruits and then)
- Reduce salt in meals. The goal is Control fluid retention Which produces cirrhosis of the liver. It is that with this disease, the liver loses the ability to regulate the amount of water and sodium in the body, which leads to fluid retention.
- Nutritional supplements. A visit to a specialist doctor can clarify whether the patient needs to take nutritional supplements in some cases Of vitamins and trace elements. This is due to the fact that “in patients with cirrhosis, it is common to find deficiencies in fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, I and K), water-soluble vitamins (often vitamin B1 deficiency) and minerals.” Such as zinc and magnesium,” explains Dr. Yanez.
- Physical activity. It has become another ingredient in almost all disease treatments. In this case, performing any type of physical exercise, including walking or doing strength exercises, helps Prevent muscle loss caused by cirrhosis.
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