In the case of gallstones, it is imperative to drink between 2.5 and 3 liters of water per day and strictly follow a diet adapted to this condition. Merely taking the medication without improving your food will not solve the problem at the root.
If you have gallstones, which are stones in the gallbladder, you should eat a diet based on foods that are very low in fat. You should, therefore, absolutely avoid consuming fried foods, oil and cold meats, and favor water, fruits, and vegetables.
Diet is a fundamental building block in the fight against gallstones: a healthy and appropriate diet helps to alleviate symptoms during attacks, namely abdominal pain and discomfort. However, better eating habits do not replace clinical treatment prescribed by the doctor. This treatment may include taking one or more medicines to relieve symptoms.
Gallstones, What Are They?
The appearance of stones in the gallbladder is a common problem. Gallstones are solid particles that form in the gallbladder from the crystallization of bile.
The biliary bladder is a small organ that, along with the pancreas and the liver, is responsible for producing digestive enzymes and bile to help digestion of fat. Gallstones prevent the gallbladder from performing its function by making it difficult to digest all foods.
Some believe that the formation of gallstones is due to poor eating habits. Excessive consumption of foods high in fat causes the liver to secrete more bile, hence the importance of controlling your diet. This is both to prevent the onset of gallstones and to relieve symptoms.
The Diet of People With Gallstones
In the event of gallstones, it is imperative to drink between 2.5 and 3 liters of water per day and to follow a diet adapted to this condition strictly. Just taking the medication without improving your diet will not solve the problem at the root.
Five to six small meals should be taken per day, taking into consideration the following points:
- No more than four whole fruits per day
- Three main courses and two or three snacks
- Have breakfast within an hour of waking up
- Do not allow more than 4-5 hours to elapse between each meal.
- If more than three hours pass between dinner and bedtime, you need to have a snack.
You should eat foods rich in water and low in fat, such as:
- Fruits, except coconut, avocado, and acai
- Vegetables, especially cooked vegetables, as they aid digestion
- Whole grains such as rice, pasta, and bread
- Low-fat meats (skinless chicken and turkey, for example)
- Water and fruit juice
For cooking, steaming or a la plancha are preferred because these two types of food do not require the addition of fat.
The prohibited foods are those that have a high-fat content:
- Whole milk, ricotta, and yogurt
- Yellow cheeses, such as parmesan
- Butter and any other animal fat
- Meats are high in fat, such as sausages, duck meat, goose meat, ribs, etc.
- Viscera (liver, heart, kidney, and tripe)
- Oilseeds, such as walnuts, chestnuts, almonds, peanuts, etc.
- Sweets, such as chocolate and cookies
- Puff pastry
- Meat broth, prepared sauces, mayonnaise
- Alcoholic beverages
- Soft drinks
Why is it Essential to Limit Your Fat Intake?
The reason people who have gallstones should limit their fat intake is to avoid over-stimulating the gallbladder and thus preventing bile production. Bile is a substance that works to mix with fats so that the latter can be absorbed in the intestine. The creation of bile in the gallbladder will cause pain and a feeling of discomfort.
For this reason, it is strongly recommended to consult a nutritionist to obtain a nutritional menu adapted to your needs. It is also essential to consult a visceral and digestive surgeon so that the latter can prescribe adequate treatment.