While the Liver Cancer and Viral Hepatitis Awareness Month, and the World Hepatitis Day are observed in January and July respectively, taking care of our liver is a lifelong responsibility as it plays an essential role in our body. However, in spite of these campaigns of the Department of Health (DOH) of the Philippines and the World Health Organization (WHO), liver-related diseases are still affecting the lives of many Filipinos.
According to a report published by WHO in 2017, liver disease deaths in the Philippines reached 8,401 or 1.36% of total deaths, making the country 119th in terms of the global ranking. While alcoholism is commonly blamed, for example in the case of Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (AFLD), it should be noted that eating of fatty food, even without alcohol consumption, can also cause liver diseases (NAFLD or Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease). The prevalence of liver diseases in our society can be attributed to the convenient accessibility and availability of alcoholic beverages and fatty food amid today's busy and stressful lifestyle.
In response to this alarming predicament, pharmaceutical company Sanofi-Aventis is bringing to Filipinos the Essentiale Forte P. This supplement contains purified EPL (Essential Phospholipids) which is extracted from natural food with precise technology from Germany. It can be easily absorbed by liver cells. Essentiale, an over-the-counter medicine, is clinically proven to strengthen liver health by promoting the repairing the function and regeneration of liver cells.
But apart from taking supplements, adopting a healthy lifestyle is vital. Regular exercise and proper diet, consisting of berries, oatmeal, dark chocolate, kale, and garlic, and drinks like coffee and green tea, are good for the liver. "Foods rich in antioxidants are liver-friendly. They include fruits and vegetables," said Sanofi Consumer Health Care Country Medical Lead Dr. Allan Jay Domingo.
Consulting your doctor to check if your liver is fully functioning is also important. People are advised to take blood tests used to help diagnose and monitor liver disease or damage. The tests measure the levels of certain enzymes and proteins in your blood. “The thing about certain liver diseases is that some of them have no manifestations or symptoms, particularly in the early stages,” said Domingo, emphasizing the importance of taking a liver checkup.
MAIN PHOTO: Essentiale Philippines Brand Lead Geline Clemente, Head of Marketing and Zone Category Lead Grace Mendoza, and Sanofi Consumer Health Care Country Medical Lead Dr. Allan Jay Domingo who explained the importance of taking care our liver.