Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a common liver disease characterized by excess lipid deposition in the hepatic tissue and subsequent oxidative and inflammatory damage. Curcumin is a dietary polyphenol with lipid-modifying, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of supplementation with phytosomal curcumin in subjects with NAFLD.Patients diagnosed with NAFLD (grades 1-3 according to liver ultrasonography) were randomly assigned to the curcumin (phytosomal form; 1 000 mg/day in 2 divided doses) (n=50) or placebo group (n=52) for a period of 8 weeks. All patients received dietary and lifestyle advises before the start of trial. Anthropometric measurements, hepatic enzymes, and liver ultrasonography were assessed at baseline and after 8 weeks of follow-up.87 subjects (n=44 and 43 in the curcumin and control group, respectively) completed the trial. Supplementation with curcumin was associated with a reduction in body mass index (-0.99±1.25 vs. - 0.15±1.31 in the curcumin and placebo groups, respectively; p=0.003) and waist circumference (-1.74±2.58 vs. -0.23±3.49 in the curcumin and placebo groups, respectively; p=0.024). Ultrasonographic findings were improved in 75.0% of subjects in the curcumin group, while the rate of improvement in the control group was 4.7% (p<0.001). Serum levels of aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase were reduced by the end of trial in the curcumin group (p<0.001) but elevated in the control group (p<0.001). Curcumin was safe and well tolerated during the course of trial.Short-term supplementation with curcumin improves liver fat and transaminase levels in patients with NAFLD.
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