Gallstone Diet: 6 Easy Foods That Prevent Gallstones
The gallbladder is a little organ present close to your liver. It releases bile, the pigment produced by the liver and responsible for digesting fats in the body. You may feel that an organ as tiny as the gallbladder may not give you too much trouble. However, there’s one health problem related to this organ which is becoming increasingly common now. They are gallbladder stones. When small, crystal-like stones develop inside the gallbladder, they are known as gallbladder stones or gallstones. They can be formed either by the deposits of the bile pigment or due to cholesterol. These form when bile combines with calcium salts.
Surprisingly, the actual cause of these stones is still unknown. But the following are believed to be contributing factors:
Increased bile cholesterol levels
Lack of bile salts
Unbalanced, unhealthy diet
Following a gallstone diet can help you prevent gallstones naturally.
Most of the health benefits of turmeric are attributed to curcumin. One such benefit is the prevention of gallstones.
Turmeric works by improving the flow of bile from the gallbladder, thereby improving fat digestion in the body and reducing the risk of gallstones as well. It also cuts down cholesterol levels and other gallstone-forming components.
Add one teaspoon or one tablespoon of turmeric to your food, milk or simply have it with water and honey. Adding black pepper can enhance curcumin absorption in the body. However, if you are on blood-thinning medication, avoid taking turmeric.
Fruits and vegetables
Gallbladder and liver remove toxins from your body. So it is important to keep them free from toxins as well. One of the best ways of doing that is by sticking to a healthy, balanced diet consisting of fresh fruits and vegetables. Foods like lemons, celery, and tomatoes detoxify your body and reduce inflammation in the liver and gallbladder. Drinking fruit and vegetable juices can also help you achieve the same goal.
Not all fats are unhealthy, some of them are necessary for your body. Healthy fats like monounsaturated and polyunsaturated help in boosting your good cholesterol levels, thereby cutting down on bad cholesterol. This way, your risk of gallstones is reduced. Olive oil, sardines, mackerel, salmon and trout boost your healthy fat levels.
Coffee is usually seen with a suspicious eye due to its caffeine content. But the negative effects only take place when you exceed the safe limit. One or two cups of coffee in a day would help in lowering your risk of gallstones. This is attributed to the ability of caffeine to stimulate bile flow. Check with your doctor as to how much caffeine can be good for you.
Eating high-fiber foods can be helpful in lowering the cholesterol accumulation in bile, thereby reducing the risk of gallstones. Foods like legumes, mangoes, whole grains, oranges, apricots, flaxseeds, sweet potato, grapefruit, barley and turnips can reduce your risk of gallstones. Try a good combination of any of these foods to get maximum fiber in all your meals.
Iron deficiency also contributes to the formation of gallstones. Fill up on iron-rich foods like kale, spinach and whole grains. These foods boost your cholesterol metabolism thereby reducing your risk of gallstones.
Besides these, here are some diet tips which can help you prevent gallstones naturally.