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Clinical nutrition

The effects of curcumin supplementation on liver enzymes, lipid profile, glucose homeostasis, and hepatic steatosis and fibrosis in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

Abstract

Background

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a major global health problem. The most common cause of death in these patients is due to cardiovascular disorders. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of curcumin supplementation on cardiovascular risk factors in patients with NAFLD.

Methods and materials

In this randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial, fifty two patients with NAFLD were randomly assigned to receive life style recommendations plus either 1500 mg curcumin or placebo for 12 weeks. Anthropometric indices, blood lipid profile, insulin resistance, as well as hepatic steatosis and fibrosis scores were measured at the beginning and the end of the study, and compared between and within groups.

Results

Hepatic fibrosis, serum cholesterol, glucose and alanin aminotransferase (ALT) reduced significantly only in curcumin group (p < 0.05). Anthropometric indices, blood lipid profile, insulin resistance, and hepatic steatosis decreased significantly in both groups (p < 0.05), without any significant difference between two groups.

Conclusion

Our results showed that daily intake of 1500 mg curcumin plus weight loss is not superior to weight loss alone in amelioration of cardiovascular risk factors in patients with NAFLD. Further studies with different dosages of curcumin are needed to be able to conclude about the effects of this dietary supplement on cardiovascular risk factors and NAFLD characteristics.

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Acknowledgements

We would like to thank all participants without whom this study was impossible. The study was financially supported by a grant from Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences to AH.

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Correspondence to Amir Sadeghi or Azita Hekmatdoost.

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Saadati, S., Hatami, B., Yari, Z. et al. The effects of curcumin supplementation on liver enzymes, lipid profile, glucose homeostasis, and hepatic steatosis and fibrosis in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Eur J Clin Nutr 73, 441–449 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41430-018-0382-9

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