Diabetes liver problems

Diabetes and liver problems

Diabetes liver problems are a complication that needs to be well understood by diabetics across the world. The liver plays a crucial role in determining your overall blood sugar levels as it both stores and provides glucose for the body. Managing your blood sugar levels is imperative for living a long, healthy life.

There are a host of long term complications associated with having diabetes including liver disease. Did you know that diabetics are 50% more likely to develop liver disease? Particularly fatty liver disease. As always seeking professional medical advice is your first point of call if you suspect you are having diabetes liver problems.

Diabetes and liver problems

Diabetes liver problems are very common

Having diabetes increases your risk of fatty liver disease, especially if you like to drink alcohol. Statistics say that diabetes and liver problems is a condition that occurs in approximately half of diabetics across the globe.

Having a fatty liver increases your risks of other liver problems such as liver inflammation, liver cancer and even heart disease. That is why it is crucial that you understand this subject very well. Having a poor diet and drinking excess alcohol increases your risks of obesity, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. All of these factor contribute to the risks associated with diabetes liver problems.

It is important to speak to your diabetes medical professional and go for regular check ups. Make sure that you are having at least 2 blood tests per year and always make sure that a liver check up is part of the test.

Watch the fat around your stomach

Unfortunately, fatty liver disease is very common among overweight people. Almost everyone with additional weight across their abdomen has some degree of fat in their liver. Diabetics usually carry some excess weight on their abdomen, but did you know that even slim diabetics often have a fatty liver?

Most diabetics will carry some degree of additional wait around their mid section. Carrying fat on your mid section is the most dangerous place to carry it. Fat does not just sit under your skin and look bad, it actually penetrates your abdominal cavity and works its way through your vital organs such as your liver. That is why it is dangerous.

Diabetes fatty liverMore research

According to recent research newly diagnosed diabetes has been linked with a doubling in the rate of cirrhosis, liver transplants and complete liver failure compared to non diabetics. That is scary!

Managing your diet and exercise regime is the best way to monitor the fat you carry around your waste, Please see my blog post about the best book available to cure type 2 diabetes.


What can you do to prevent diabetes liver problems?

First, foremost and uppermost you need to manage your weight through proper diet and exercise. The more normal your body weight and the better managed your blood sugar levels are the less you will have to worry about a whole host of complications associated with having diabetes including diabetes liver problems.

  • Avoid sugar and high GI foods. White rice is a food that releases a lot of glucose into the bloodstream over a long time. I can never control my sugars after eating white rice, especially at night. The high carb content is mostly stored as fat.
  • Avoid vegetable oil. Vegetable oil and sugar in your diet makes for a fatty liver.
  • Foods that are high in fat, especially saturated fats are the worst for your body and your liver. Hot chips, crisps, hamburgers etc should be kept in a minimum
  • Eat a diet high in fresh fruit and vegetables. These foods are low in fat and the body loves them. All your internal organs will thank you for feeding them nature’s super foods.
  • Your alcohol consumption needs to be monitored. Alcohol increases the volume of fat in the liver and increases the risk of cirrhosis. It is not necessary to avoid alcohol altogether, in fact some research suggests that a glass of red wine with dinner has a beneficial effect on the body.
  • Taking a daily liver tonic can help you minimise diabetes liver problems for obvious reasons.
  • Omega 3 found in fish oil has a very beneficial effect on your liver and other organs. Eating a diet high in fish or taking a daily fish oil supplement can work wonders for your liver over the long term.
  • Exercising regularly will help you reduce your body fat and importantly subtract fat out of your liver. A good combination of resistance and cardio exercise is recommended for best results. Aim to exercise at least 3 times per week.


Diabetes liver problems is just another complication in the long list of negative impact factors diabetes has on the body over the long term. Taking a common sense approach is always considered the best way to combat any condition. Take regular blood tests that include a check up on your liver function. Watch your diet and monitor alcohol consumption. Exercise at least 3 times per week. Drink plenty of water and manage your blood sugar levels as effectively as possible.

For type 1 diabetics please see my blog post on whether insulin makes you gain weight

For type 2 diabetics please see my post on taking metformin to lose weight 

Please also read my article on diabetes exercise guidelines to follow

Please let me know if you have had diabetes liver problems or if you have any concerns about them that I have not addressed in this article.

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  1. Matthew

    How would you recommend avoiding white rice if you are travelling in Asia where white rice dominates diets? I lived a year in Thailand and it was impossible to not to eat white rice since almost all foods are based on it. Cooking your own food isn’t a possibility either since most apartments do not come with kitchens due to abundance of readily available, cheap restaurants around the block. To this day I still haven’t been able to live even a day in Thailand without consuming white rice.

    1. Ben (Post author)

      Hi Matthew, Don’t get me wrong, white rice is ok and it is fine to eat it especially if you are travelling through Asia. The point I was trying to make is that as a diabetic, I have a very hard time controlling my blood sugar levels after eating a bowl of white rice. Same goes for white bread. For example last night I ate chicken fried rice from my local Thai takeaway place. I loved it but I woke up this morning and my blood sugar level was higher than normal. That seems to happen every time I eat white rice, especially before bed. If you are a non diabetic then it probably wont be an issue for you. If you are a diabetic just be mindful of this…

      1. Godwin Sobrowe

        Thanks for the information


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