Can Aerobic Exercise Reduce Liver Inflammation?
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 8 percent of women and 17 percent of men will become dependent on alcohol in their lifetime. This alcohol dependence and excessive consumption leads to 88,000 deaths annually and many other health complications. A very common illness related to excessive alcohol consumption is liver failure.
New research is being conducted to find if there is a way to prevent liver failure in chronic alcohol consumers through aerobic exercise. Researchers from the MU School of Medicine conducted a study on ‘runner rats,’ which are rats bred for high activity, to test if metabolism would protect the liver from fatty deposits and inflammation. They split the rats into two groups. One group was exposed to chronic alcohol use for six weeks while the other was not.
They found that fatty deposits were larger in the livers of the group of mice exposed to alcohol, unsurprisingly. However, they also found that they did not see inflammation in the liver. They believe this is due to the higher physical activity levels which protect dysfunction of the metabolism.
Although this is a start, more research is needed to see how fitness can protect the liver from alcohol.