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Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and childhood obesity

Abstract

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in children and adolescents has an estimated prevalence of 36.1% in the context of obesity. This figure is anticipated to increase in conjunction with the global obesity epidemic. Worryingly, NAFLD in childhood persisting into adulthood is likely to be harmful, contributing to significant hepatic and extrahepatic morbidities. Early disease detection is required, although the optimum timing, frequency and mode of screening remains undetermined. While the efficacy of several medications, antioxidants, fatty acid supplements and probiotics has been investigated in children, healthy eating and physical activity remain the only prevention and treatment strategies for paediatric NAFLD. This short review discusses the epidemiology, diagnosis, pathogenesis and management of NAFLD in childhood obesity.

  • endocrinology
  • epidemiology
  • obesity

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