Scientists at the University of Illinois at Chicago found that alternating diet and exercise can improve the health of people with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. This is reported in an article published in the journal Cell Metabolism.
The study involved 80 obese adults with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Volunteers were randomized into one of four groups: a fasting group, an aerobic exercise group, a combination group, and a control group in which participants made no changes to their behavior.
Within three months, people who exercised and alternated between fasting and unrestricted food intake on a daily basis experienced an increase in insulin sensitivity, as well as a decrease in body weight, fat mass, waist circumference, liver fat, and disease biomarkers such as alanine transaminase levels.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is the accumulation of fat and inflammation in patients who drink little or no alcohol. Approximately 65 percent of obese adults have this disease, which is closely associated with the development of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. It can lead to more serious complications such as cirrhosis or liver failure.