Soda, pizza and salty food up liver disease in kids: Study

Children who regularly intake fructose present in soda, sweetened beverages, pizza and salty food, biscuits, yogurt may be be prone to liver disease, researchers warn.

According to a study, led by researchers from Bambino Gesu Hospital in Italy, dietary fructose increases serum uric acid concentrations.

Both uric acid concentration and fructose consumption may be high in individuals with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) - a condition where extra fat is accumulated in liver cells in people who drink little or no alcohol.

It is estimated to affect up to 30 per cent of the general population in Western countries and up to 9.6 per cent of all children and 38 per cent of obese children across a spectrum of liver disease, including NASH (defined as steatosis, hepatocyte ballooning and inflammation).

Although NASH is a less aggressive form of NAFLD, it can progress to severe fibrosis and cirrhosis, with development of hepatocellular carcinoma in adults.

The findings suggested that fructose consumption was independently associated with high uric acid, which occurred more frequently in patients with NASH than in not-NASH patients.

"It is plausible that dietary fructose intake and uric acid concentrations are potential risk factors for liver disease progression in NAFLD," said Valerio Nobili from Bambino Gesu Hospital in Italy.

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