Living Without A Gallbladder9 months, 2 weeks ago
Posted on Sep 13, 2018, 2 a.m.
Each year over 600,000 cholecystectomies are performed within the USA, gallbladder surgery has become a routine procedure with over 90% of them being performed laparoscopically which is minimally invasive.
Symptoms of a failing gallbladder include pain in the mid or upper right section of the abdomen that comes and goes which can radiate to other areas such as the neck and back; nausea; vomiting; fever; gas; acid reflux; shaking chills; and digestive problems among other things. Liver tests can often show evidence of gallbladder disease, along with checking blood amylase or lipase levels to look for inflammation of the pancreas.
Patients undergoing the surgery are sometimes told that nothing will change for them after the surgery, and are sometimes advised to follow low fat diets to help prevent digestive problems and diarrhea. The suggestion sounds like sound advise until you take into account that the body relies on healthy fats for many important functions including makeup of cell membranes and energy source.
The gallbladder is located under the liver on the right side of the abdomen. The liver produces bile that the gallbladder stores until it is needed to breakdown fats into fatty acids for absorption through intestinal walls.
Low fat diets can make the gallbladder sluggish, making bile become thick and slow. Gallstone and gallbladder attacks can result and lead to the need for gallbladder surgery. Many patients suffer from essential fatty acid deficiency which carries symptoms such as poor blood sugar handling, poor nervous system function and irritability after surgery. The liver will continue to produce bile even without the bladder which will continue to trickle into the small intestine. As meals with fats enter the small intestine there will not be sufficient amounts of bile to break them down resulting in diarrhea and cramps.
There are some options available to help you live a long and healthy life even without the gallbladder such as bile salts to help support the production of bile; taurine and glutamine amino acid capsules to help improve bile production and quality; herbs such as chives,
Mint, basil, parsley, and garlic to help support bile production; hot spices such as turmeric, curry, mustard, horseradish, and chili peppers which helps support liver functions; and drinking plenty of water which is the body’s most abundant macronutrient that helps the liver with bile production and detoxification.
Efforts to support the liver and gallbladder also have a few things to limit and/or avoid such as alcohol, processed and refined sugars, carbs, and deep fried foods which your waistline will also thank you for as well.
If in doubt in regards to any symptoms that you may be experiencing bring it up with your doctor and possibly seek guidance from a nutritional coach who can assist in fine tuning a diet and/or supplementation. There are many support groups full of other people who are also living without their gallbladders that may be able to offer support and helpful tips through shared experiences which can often offer a wealth of practical information to help adjust to living without this organ.
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