Your liver function can drive heart disease and obesity

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In a new study from Brunel University London, researchers found how susceptible we are to obesity and heart disease could be determined by our livers.

They found that heart disease is far more prevalent in people who were born with a set of genes that have previously been linked to how the body controls functions such as the metabolism of fat and glucose.

The finding may help clinicians identify those at the highest risk of heart disease in the future, potentially paving the way for earlier interventions.

In the study, the team used data from over 700,000 individuals.

They focused on liver enzymes, which are a reflection of our liver function, to identify which genes in the human genome control liver function and what else might be associated with those genes.

They found that these genes are linked to obesity and the distribution of fat in the body and the percentage of fat in the liver – they are implicated in the metabolism and how the body processes fats and glucose.

The scientists then looked at people’s genomes based on the number of hazardous liver genes they carry, then examined how an abundance of these hazardous genes affects someone’s susceptibility to heart disease.

They found that when we looked at coronary heart disease, for example, there is an abundance of disease in those who carry hazardous liver genes compared to those who don’t. There is a causal link between liver function and cardiovascular disease.

Heart and circulatory disease cause more than a quarter of all deaths in the UK, with one person dying on average every three minutes, according to the British Heart Foundation.

If you care about liver health, please read studies about people with diabetes need to prevent this dangerous liver disease and findings of 5 big myths about liver detoxing you should know.

For more information about liver disease treatment and prevention, please see recent studies about oral diseases linked to a 75% increase in liver cancer risk and results showing that common beer plant may help treat colon and liver cancer.

The study is published in Nature Communications. One author of the study is Dr Raha Pazoki.

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