Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Treating my son’s fatty liver

When my eldest was 9 years old, which was in 2006, he was diagnosed with a fatty liver. If I could still remember my child’s pediatrician  explained,  that fatty liver is a buildup of fat within the liver, the fat causes swelling and scarring; the swelling and scarring can avert the liver to do its functions  such as –clean  the bloodstream of harmful substances and poisons, make bile which contains chemicals to help us digest the food we eat, control blood sugar and cholesterol levels,   and makes the proteins that allow blood to clot normal, also the swelling and scarring will lead to liver failure. 

I was so frightened and cried for my son’s health.
The pediatrician further explained that fatty liver is tied to obesity. My son was obese when he was in grade school. If I still can recall the symptoms that lead us to visit my child’s pediatrician, was that he constantly complains abdominal pain and get exhausted instantly.

My eldest undergo ultrasound to confirm the pediatrician’s suspicion of fatty liver. The ultrasound indeed verified the disease; it showed fats as well as how much fat has built up in his liver. The saddest part is when my child’s pediatrician told us that there is no medication for my son’s disease.  I weep loudly. And she advice us that to control the disease from worsening we have to manage my son’s weight, eat healthy foods and undergo regular exercise.

I take good care of my son. I want him to be healthy. It was two years of diligence and patience for the whole family. but at the end was rewarded.  Before his elementary graduation, back in 2008, he took on another session of ultrasound procedure and this time his pediatrician said he is cured. I was so happy hearing the pediatrician’s words. It was the sweetest words that I heard. 

So how I and hubby take good care of my son?  
  1. Change the family’s lifestyle – eat healthy foods, increase fruit and vegetables intake and exercise daily with our kids – walking, jogging around the neighborhood.  Changing lifestyle is really tough but we must do it for our son. The change in lifestyle will help my son to lose weight and all together would also lose fat in his liver.
  2. Shun from ALL processed foods.
  3. Pass up for junk foods.
  4. Never serve our son of fried foods.
  5. Avoid intake of fatty foods especially foods having triglycerides such as butter, margarines, mayonnaise, most COMMERCIAL snack foods such as pastries, cakes, doughnut, pies and crackers, jams, jellies, ice cream,  sweetened cereals, sweetened gelatin, fruit juices, sodas, smoothies and sweetened coffee drinks.
  6. Every summer we enrolled our son for swimming lessons.