by Dr. Victor Marchione
Your gallbladder is a little sac located just under your liver.
When your liver produces bile, it is stored in the gallbladder. This bile helps your body to digest fats.
Normally, your gallbladder releases bile into the upper portion of the small intestine (called your duodenum) after you’ve eaten some food and the digestive process has started.
If your gallbladder senses there are fats to break down, it releases even more bile.
Some people run into trouble with their gallbladders, particularly by eating foods that irritate the gallbladder. Gallstones can develop or the gallbladder can become inflamed. Sometimes, the presence of a gallstone won’t cause any symptoms.
However, if the stones get large enough, they may lodge themselves into the duct that leads away from the gallbladder. Gallstones can get stuck and then unstuck, causing reoccurring pain. If your gallbladder duct ever gets continuously blocked, the situation becomes very serious and you will need surgery.
These signs indicate you may have a serious problem with gallstones:
- Pain on the upper right side of the abdomen
- Pain following meals
- An intolerance for fatty foods
- Loss of appetite
Now, if your gallbladder is inflamed, it could be a sign that certain foods are causing irritation. Here is a list of the most common foods that irritate the gallbladder.
1. Meats High in Fat
Add fatty meats to your list of foods that irritate the gallbladder and eat more vegetable protein instead. Choose tofu, beans, and fish.
2. Fried Foods
3. Highly Acidic Foods
4. Dairy Products
Many people are also lactose intolerant without even knowing it, compounding their discomfort.
5. Refined Foods
Into this category fall many of the snack foods that are sold everywhere you look: cookies, white bread, pastries, cakes, crackers and pasta. These foods can irritate the gallbladder.
Anything made from refined wheat flour or refined sugar could cause irritation to the gallbladder.
Two other foods that irritate the gallbladder and which you might want to avoid are eggs (which are high in cholesterol) and margarine.
Source(s) for Today’s Article:
- Davis, S., “Foods That Irritate Gallstones,” Livestrong web site, February 22, 2010; http://www.livestrong.com/article/85978-foods-irritate-gallstones/, last accessed October 31, 2013.
- Reynolds, L., “Foods to Avoid with Gallbladder Trouble,” eHow web site; http://www.ehow.com/facts_4830685_foods-avoid-gallbladder-trouble.html, last accessed October 31, 2013.