So I have some news on the health front today. You all know how I have had trouble sleeping for about a year now. Well, there are some repercussions of all those sleepless nights that are unfolding now that it has been this long.
About 4 months ago, I began feeling pain in my right side, near my rib cage. At first I thought it was indigestion or maybe I had worked out too hard recently. However, the pain persisted & even got worse. Being fascinated with anatomy and physiology, I tend to research facts about liver function in my spare time… you know, just because.
What I found was that, if you sleep less then 5 hours per night on average, your liver can be damaged in the same way as if you drink too much alcohol. How is this so? You see, the liver helps to transport fatty acids out of the blood and break down HDL (cholesterol). When a person drinks too much alcohol, their liver is effected by the ethanol, causing it to fail in that cholesterol break down process.
Livestrong.com explains that there are 2 types of fatty liver. “Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is a condition where there is an accumulation of fat in the liver even if you do not drink alcohol or drink only a little. This type of fatty liver disease is common, and often has no complications or symptoms. However, it can cause scarring and inflammation in your liver… This causes your liver to enlarge, which may lead to discomfort on the upper right side of your abdomen” They go on to say that this liver damage plays a big role in sleeplessness: “It is possible that liver disease causes alterations in how the body makes melatonin, which is a substance that helps you sleep”
After learning all this, I just assumed that I had a fatty liver. So yesterday, I finally decided to make an appointment with my doctor to see what was wrong. I was nervous at what he would find, but I knew that I needed to get it checked no matter how scary it was.
My Question For You Is…
- Have you ever had experience with any intestinal problems?
- What stomach-friendly foods do you like to eat?