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Eating Fast Food Regularly May Lead to Liver Disease

A​ new study, published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, finds that eating 20% or more of daily calorie intake from fast food sources can increase the risk of developing nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

In the current study, the researchers used data from almost 4,000 adults ages 20 and older who took part in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. They analyzed data from dietary recall surveys and measured steatosis within determined parameters. Among these participants, 29% received 20% or more of their daily food intake from fast food sources.

Dr. Ani Kardashian, a hepatologist with Keck Medicine of USC, comments on the results of the study: “Eating at least one-fifth of total daily calories from fast food (which is true of 29% of the U.S. population!) can increase the risk of fatty liver, which can lead to cirrhosis and its complications, including liver failure and liver cancer. The negative effects are particularly severe in people who already have diabetes and obesity.”

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