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British Liver Trust
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Sick all the time. Need advice.

Hi gang, this is my favorite liver forum. After years of pain meds, and bad bad foods, I have a " mild" fatty liver. It does NOT feel mild! I don't do pain meds anymore. I've changed my diet. But I am morbidly obese. ( Not just a love for yummy food, but two psych meds that made me gain tons!)

Lss, I won't have insurance for about a month or so. I have chronic ruq pain, pain under left ribs too. Mild nausea, shortness of breath, and always tired. The Dr said, lose weight. So I'm on ketogenic w intermittent fasting. I was told that fasting is bad for FL. But I also heard it's good!! What is it? Good or bad. I didn't tell the Drs I overused pain meds, I believe I did some damage. My new symptom is itching! I take Benadryl and that helps.

Guys, I'm miserable! In 6 months I went from feeling normal to feeling diseased! I have a walker and cane. I'm only 52.

My questions are: is fasting lightly bad? When I do get insurance, do I demand biopsy even though my blood works good? As I'm on USA nhs, they tend to not give you expensive tests. Losing weight is my daily goal, but is there some drink, or herb that can ease my pain and nausea?

My FB group scolded me for fasting, but don't you think no crap going thru your liver for 28 hours is a good thing? Mixed info on this. Ty blt

18 Replies

Check out the Keto diet. No carbs. Also known as Atkins diet. You will never feel hungry, I have done this twice before and lost 4 stone in 6 months. I am preparing to start it next week. All carbs in my home are being given away. My on line order will be totally different. I was told if I shed the weight I will be around for 20 years more.


I'm on ketogenic diet! Yep!! Doing good on it! Ty

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Hi, sorry to hear you are suffering. This is what I did to help myself. I stopped eating anything processed, red meat, and generally anything white - bread rice etc. I switched to brown rice and wholegrain brown bread. Initially I weighed my food to make sure I was eating a healthy portion of food. I eat the following:

Breakfast: 1 banana (sometimes with fresh strawberries)

Lunch: half a can of tuna in water with homemade salad consisting of difference lettuce, rocket, beetroot, carrot etc no dressings.

Dinner: 1 salmon fillet with veg, typically peas, Brussels sprouts, carrot etc OR a small chicken breast or a couple of slices of lean turkey breast with the same or salad.

Snacks: raw carrot/white cabbage, strawberries, banana

Drinks: Water

I don’t drink alcohol as I don’t like it.

I also exercise for an hour each day, 30 mins cardio and 30 mins strength training with free weights. No personal trainer or gym just me and YouTube videos. I am 1lb off a two stone weight loss since September.

It was really hard initially, I couldn’t exercise for more than 10 minutes and struggled with food however I stuck at it and feel so much better. Blood tests have improved, some now show normal.

I now understand that this has to be my lifestyle to be healthy however I will be having a hot chocolate on Christmas Eve and a small portion of Christmas pudding on Christmas Day as my treat!

My understanding is that if you lose too much to quickly it can affect your blood results, but I’m not a Doctor. My weight loss has been about 1-2 lb a week which I understand is healthy.

This worked for me, I still have a long way to go but am keeping at it. I itched loads until I did the above and it stopped!

I hope this is of some help, best of luck!


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Sounds good owl. I just got the itches and realized its liver. My eating is clean and keto, and I'm learning much about nutrition. God bless


I had the itching but nothing else...all went when I ate healthily!


I've done a keto diet quite a few times to lose weight but only to lose a few kg & it worked but then I put the weight back on. Keto is not a diet that you can live by long term. The longest I could go on a keto diet was 8 weeks & it was always a relief to end it. The liver finds carbs easiest to turn into energy. Forcing the liver to convert fat into energy by avoiding carbs as you do on a keto diet is unnatural & not something I'd be doing if I felt the way that you do.

There are no long lived populations anywhere in the world that eat keto. All of the long lived populations (Sardinia, Okinawa, Costa Rica, Ikari in Greece & Seventh-day Adventists in California) eat the opposite of keto i.e. a diet rich in healthy minimally processed carbs, lots of vegetables, a moderate amount of fruit and (with the exception of the seventh Day Adventists who are vegetarians) a small amount of meat as an occasional treat.

To lose weight you need to take in less calories than you use each day regardless of whatever diet you try. Several months ago a woman who had cirrhosis & got very sick posted on the forum how her daughter put her on a vegetarian diet cooking all her meals for her & she lost 20 lb. in two months & feels much healthier.

If you have fatty liver the weight loss needs to be gradual. If you don't feel well while on a keto diet it might be worth considering a diet like the one that the doctor in the link below promotes. There are foods in his diet that you can eat a lot of because they don't contain many calories but they fill you up. You might find it a better way to lose the weight than a keto diet. You could even add a small amount of very lean meat to the doctor's diet once or twice a week & I believe it would still work.


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Ty so much for this tip. I won't do keto long. Only to get mobile again. I'm looking at 5 months perhaps. I hope to get a real life nutritionist. I can't imagine cheese and fat meats on the Long haul are good. Thanks


I have been counting the calories and have lost almost 2 stone. The animal fat argument is well and truly scientifically proven to be totally incorrect. So called low fat foods are loaded with carbs quite often. The liver Professor told me in very clear language, to reduce liver fat carbs have to go! The body uses carbs first, if there are none fat is burned, including fat built up in the arteries. Keto is a lifestyle change. The carb content of seemingly healthy foods is massive. Ready meals too have hidden carbs, He explained that this is the only way of eating to remove liver fat. I know this works and I was never hungry on Atkins. In the 80's and nineties animal fats were the enemy. Flora,fully skimmed milk very lean meat etc. was pushed constantly. Obesity is causing fatty liver . Cirrhosis develops from this . Fast and processed food is the culprit. The Prof told me that losing the carbs will lose liver fat. He stated I could expect to be around in 20 years time if I do this. Cooking is not the norm in many households. both parents working, hungry children, I cannot stand drinks with artificial sweetener in so I tend to drink only tea and coffee.Water of course in hot weather. Losing weight gradually is not sufficient it seems. Liver fat has to go and no carb/very low carb is what the Prof stated.Each to their own regarding diet, but if a liver professor is saying this, its unwise to argue. Previously I have been told to 'lose weight' I have reduced my food intake, only ate when hungry etc Almost 2 stone in 2 years.On paper this is the ideal.Very gradual and a change in eating habits. I have progressed to cirrhosis in this time. Its not just losing weight, its reducing liver fat. To burn fat carbs have to go. Fat is the next energy source, People who are not overweight can still have a fatty liver, A low carb diet is needed to burn the fat but they need an energy source. no carbs means fat is the energy source. Only time will tell, but I dont want my liver to worsen, I want to see my granddaughter graduate, travel then make me a Great Nan.Carbs are what is unnatural Edward, this is why there is an obesity epidemic in the western world. The US and uk in particular. The biggest stumbling block for Keto is the complexity. I have ME and fibro plus arthritis. Execise is out, Fatigue is a bummer, but I now have a strict regime, I sleep if tired and can now say no. I will use this skill now to say no to carbs lol

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On YouTube is a Dr ( not selling books lol)....Dr Eric Berg. He's explained the way keto and intermittent fasting cleans the fat out of the liver and pancreas. He says, if we get fat in those two organs, it can turn very serious! I'm tired all the time. Itchy. But when I eat proper ( keto w low carb vegetables) I feel much better!

Sadly, there's not enough information or too much conflicting information on what eating plans are best. My Dr said lose weight, but named no food plan. Doing well on keto for 2 months, I had a slip. Carbs and sugar, and all my symtoms returned w vengence. My body cannot process sugars and chemicals anymore.

I pray I can get a good, caring Dr soon to do more tests. Because Nash is not unlikely. I've lost 40% of my health. It creates poor mental health too. I recommend Dr Eric Berg and Google AUTOPHAGY. I believe fasting is GOOD for the liver, unlike my FB liver group who sometimes shames me, as my disease came from drugs and booze too. Lol

Here, you folks are understanding and non judgemental, plus British music is the best. Lol


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I saw his you tube,, no sales pitches just the facts and science behind it . I can understand people are sceptical, we have had low fat no animal fats preached at us for 30 plus years. Keto doesnt just reduce body fat and liver fat. I clears fat from arteries too. Reduces BP, can prevent diabetes too. The figures are never published of how many people turned to drugs and /or alcohol as a form of self medicating! Mental Health services are atrocious now. Prisons are full of these people too. Care in the community was a brilliant way forward but so many mental hospitals closed. Budgets disappeared and many people turn to drugs to remove their 'pain'. People turn to alcohol to lift their spirits, you never see warnings that alcohol is a depressant, particularly in pubs and clubs.Judge not lest ye be judged is most apt.

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Yes, I've had mental illness for decades. I just used whatever to be numb. We CANT judge. But I'm free of all that type of coping now!

I just hope as I eat well and change, my liver gets better. It drains us so...

Ty friend


I hear you and admire your courage. You have already accomplished so much by withdrawing from pain meds. All I can do now is Asprin or Paracetamol at night so I can sleep. 'In my opinion', fasting 'can' be very beneficial, but you need to watch the bodies 'detox' mechanism. Too much, too soon is not good. If you must 'fast', just miss a meal sometimes.

'in my opinion' and from what you have said, just changing to more wholesome foods is a great start. And due to the psychological/emotional component, perhaps continue to eat foods you like, but reduce the portion size. As long as your input is less than your output, you'll lose weight.

Exercising, when your in pain, and especially when the exercise aggravates the pain, is a real challenge. Walking a little each day is a good way to increase your output and build those atrophied muscles. Don't overdo it, start slow and slowly increase as you improve. And losing weight will help ease the joint pain as well.

It's a slow process, and there's no quick fix, but if you find one, let me know. I understand how it can be too difficult for some people and they just give up, but you're a fighter, and you said you make a goal each day to lose weight. Your still young, always have your long term goal in mind, how vital you will be with a reasonable BMI and your strength back!!!

I know you will succeed...NEVER GIVE UP

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Ty so much! I'm doing fab w ketogenic diet and exercise and intermittent fasting, but now I hear fasting puts huge strains on the liver. I FEEL better lost 20-25 lbs in 3 months, no urq pain. No tummy aches. Itching is gone .

Dear Lord, I must get this bulk off and am highly motivated. Fasting clears my head up. More energy.

Well, ty again. Best support group I've chatted w

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Great stuff, sounds like you've got it sorted :-) But just to qualify the fasting thing: 'In my humble opinion', both liver and kidneys work hard with the detox, so care needs to be taken. However, I reckon they're more stressed by overeating, alcohol and other drugs/meds.

And yes, it's amazing how good you feel when fasting...that is, until heavy detox kicks in; well, there are always exceptions to the rule hey!

Slowly work towards your goals. Make them a permanent sea change for your future.

Seize the day... and strangle it

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Seize the day, than strangle it?! Love that!

Ty, I'm trying to do this all as healthy as possible. The right nutrition, plenty of leafy greens, low dairy, leaner meats. I think ketogenic w intermittent fasting is my best bet, for a few months. Cut that bulk! Happy New year!!


Yeah, thx and Happy New Year also. I'm not a fan of diets per se, though I guess you've got to call them something. I checked the 'ketonic' diet and it looks to be a high fat job (75%). Personally, I go for approx 80% fruit and veg with 20% of anything else. For me, it's a life style change, so I'm not too restrictive on what I eat. People need to find what suits them and stuff the critics hey!

All the best with the ketonic,



Amen. I agree. Since being on ketogenic all of my symtoms are gone! Nausea, itching, ruq pain, fatigue. I guess carbs and sugar were doing me in?? Once the bulk is down, a bit, I can resume fruits. However, I heard sucrolous is bad for liver. My Dr approves of my diet change. This is a confusing diagnosis. Ty


Your doin' great, finding what works for you. Our Dr's mostly try to be encouraging. They see our driven motivation towards change and they in turn are encouraged by it. Without that continued positive attitude, nothing will change.

When I was fighting to be rid of pain meds etc, I would berate myself when I fell back. However, I knew that relapse was all apart of positive change and recovery. Still, it was a bitter pill to swallow. I wrote a sort of a succinct poem at the time, and can be applied to our goal setting and many similar circumstances where effort is needed. It's not a way of condoning relapse etc, but allows for it.

It’s not a stop if you slow down

It’s not a step back if you stop

It’s not a reversal if you step back

With the intention of moving forward

When your better equipped to do so

- Jay Black



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