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Int J Biol Sci 2019; 15(2):265-276. doi:10.7150/ijbs.30121


Role of Nutrition in the Pathogenesis and Prevention of Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: Recent Updates

Rahim Ullah1,2, Naveed Rauf1,2, Ghulam Nabi3, Hamid Ullah4, Yi Shen2, Yu-Dong Zhou2✉, Junfen Fu1✉

1. Department of Endocrinology, Children's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou 310051, China
2. Department of Neurobiology, Institute of Neuroscience, and the Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Key Laboratory of Medical Neurobiology of the Ministry of Health of China, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou 310058, China
3. Institute of Hydrobiology, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan, 430072, China
4. Laboratory of Reproductive Neuroendocrinology, Department of Animal Sciences, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is an acquired metabolic disease characterized by triglycerides (TGs) deposition in liver induced by other factors rather than alcohol consumption. NAFLD significantly contributes to liver diseases in children and adults. NAFLD pathogenesis is associated with age, gender, race and ethnicity. Insulin resistance, hyperinsulinemia, elevated plasma free fatty acids (FFAs), fatty liver, hepatocyte injury, liver inflammation, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, imbalanced pro-inflammatory cytokines, and fibrosis are the characteristics of NAFLD. Factors including genetic and epigenetic pathways, sedentary lifestyle, sleep, and diet composition affect NAFLD pathogenesis. In this review, we discuss the aetiology, risk factors and pathogenesis of NAFLD. Special focus is given to macro and micro nutrition as causing factors and their role in the prevention of NAFLD pathogenesis.

Keywords: nutrition, hepatic inflammation, NAFLD pathogenesis, prevention

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) license ( See for full terms and conditions.
How to cite this article:
Ullah R, Rauf N, Nabi G, Ullah H, Shen Y, Zhou YD, Fu J. Role of Nutrition in the Pathogenesis and Prevention of Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: Recent Updates. Int J Biol Sci 2019; 15(2):265-276. doi:10.7150/ijbs.30121. Available from