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  • Questions on weight loss, fat consumption after gall bladder removal

    This afternoon I came across a post that caught my attention and now I am really doing some serious thinking as well as trying to find adequate research on the subject.
    The basic question dealt with whether or not a person without a gall bladder can eat fat. There was some discussion too on the use of bile salts and enzymes to better deal with the constant flow of bile into the digestive tract. BM's discussed as that is affected and there is obviously a lack of absorption with many vitamins/minerals that the body needs.

    Reading other info all over the net indicated there are many who like myself, gained weight after gall bladder removal and now face more difficulty in getting it off.
    If the bile in the digestive tract moves the food out faster than usual, to the point where there is a depletion of vitamins, then it seems likely that the overall food value of what I eat is less than optimal.

    I know that primal is the way for me ... and if I need to adjust the fat amounts then I will, but I am very curious now in how this is affecting my overall health as well as losing the extra pounds. The family doctor at that time and the surgeon who removed the gall bladder in 1999 never said anything to me regarding any connection to foods/fats. Not surprising though considering most have no clue about nutrition.


    So I am curious, and a bit mystified ... from what I have read, it appears that I do need to do some supplementing to deal with the bile.
    Have any of you dealt with this ? Suggestions, thoughts ...
    Everything's shiny, Cap'n. Not to fret.





  • #2
    I had my gallbladder removed two weeks before starting Primal. Dropped 15lbs over a couple months (weight loss slow, but moving). Fat loss hasn't stopped though (going on 10 months now), because I'm gaining muscle. About 70% of my calories (1800-2000) come from fat, with no major problems. Maybe some weird bathrooms runs, but it was super bad before primal, and so any improvement made things better.

    After my gallbladder removal/starting primal, I started getting a lot of little white spots on my finger nails - which I never really experienced growing up. Just starting taking Now Super Enzymes last week (went up to five capsules per meal) - and it's helped me feeling full sooner. Not sure about the science - it might be that my body is now able to digest and receive nutrients, so I'm not always trying to stuff myself every meal now.

    Primal is still the way to go, even without a gallbladder - and it was okay for me for almost a year without any use of oxbile/digestive enzymes.
    Last edited by jandge; 09-03-2011, 06:10 PM.

    Do yourself a favor and become your own savior.
    Congenital Hypothyroid
    CW: 225lbs SW: 245lbs

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    • #3
      Originally posted by jandge View Post
      I had my gallbladder removed two weeks before starting Primal. Dropped 15lbs over a couple months (weight loss slow, but moving). Fat loss hasn't stopped though (going on 10 months now), because I'm gaining muscle. About 70% of my calories (1800-2000) come from fat, with no major problems. Maybe some weird bathrooms runs, but it was super bad before primal, and so any improvement made things better.

      After my gallbladder removal/starting primal, I started getting a lot of little white spots on my finger nails - which I never really experienced growing up. Just starting taking Now Super Enzymes last week (went up to five capsules per meal) - and it's helped me feeling full sooner. Not sure about the science - it might be that my body is now able to digest and receive nutrients, so I'm not always trying to stuff myself every meal now.

      Primal is still the way to go, even without a gallbladder - and it was okay for me for almost a year without any use of oxbile/digestive enzymes.
      I agree ... I can't imagine not being Primal !
      Everything's shiny, Cap'n. Not to fret.




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      • #4
        Apparently coconut oil and other MCTs are great for people with missing gallbladders as they are immediately broken into free fatty acids in the gut and move into the bloodstream without needing to be broken down with bile.

        One of the most outstanding benefits of consuming MCFA’s is that they do not require the liver and gallbladder to digest and emulsify them. This means instant energy and increased thermogenesis (increased metabolic rate in the body) which leads to more heat production as well as improved circulation. For anyone with impaired fat digestion or a removed gallbladder, coconut oil is the only oil to consume as it is very easily digested.


        Learn more: The Great Fat Debate - Why Virgin Coconut Oil Is Best
        As to weight-loss, my Ma lost over 100lbs after having her gallbladder removed. She never had any issues.
        My Journal

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        • #5
          I've had my gallbladder out for 10 years now. I have had constant trouble with the dumping of bile (yellow diarrhea) and GERD and all sorts of issues. I noticed a long time ago that if I had a high-fat breakfast usually I was okay for the day but somehow with doctors telling me to eat more grains and lower fat to cure the symptoms I kept doing that.

          I've been primal for just over a week now and my gallbladder problems have disappeared. I think that I can't go as high fat as some talk about on here, but I've been eating bacon and eggs and ribeye steaks along with beef stew and sausage etc...

          And I've lost 10 lbs - 12 if you count the semi-primal I did the week or so before I got serious.

          When you think about it, the bile is necessary for digesting fat. The gallbladder doesn't produce bile, it stores it. The problem after you lose your gallbladder is that you can't store it effectively so when you eat food, the bile just gets injected into your stomach, leading to dumping of the excess. If you eat more fats, you have less excess because you uses more to digest them. I always tried to eat more fiber (grains) so it would 'sop up' the excess. That never really worked for me.

          Funny, when I had the gallbladder problem I was in my 20s and had always eaten a high-fat, rich diet of real food (including lots of wine, bread and desserts). Ironically the gallbladder problems showed up after I lost about 15 lbs using the CW of grains + veggies + chicken or salmon + lots of cardio.

          My doctor told me I had the gallstones because I ate too much fat. After I had it out, I read a study that said that switching from a high-fat to a low-fat diet increased one's risk of developing gallstones.

          As for supplementation, I am watching to see what I might need to do. I think I have a problem absorbing some nutrients because of the decade of poor digestion and inflammation from eating wheat and gallbladder related issues.

          ~rc

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          • #6
            I had my gallbladder out 20 years ago now - the only problem I've had, which I'm only just realising now, is that my stomach stays full for much longer, so I can't eat late at night and have to leave at least 2 hours before I exercise. I've got some NOW enzymes (platinum digest I think), just wish I could remember to take the damn things, lol!

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            • #7
              not directly related but...

              After suffering from chronic gallbladder attacks, out of the blue, the past couple years, I was about to have mine removed. My family doctor said it would be no big deal, that it wasn't an organ that I needed so why keep it if it flares up now and then. I thought ok great, will do. I did a little research on it at the time and was a little weary of some of the side-effects that I was coming across, it didn't seem as "not a big deal" as it was made out to be, but I figured they wouldn't steer me wrong, they're the doctors right. I sat on the fence for awhile, I'm in Canada and was on the waiting list so I had to time to really think about what I was considering doing.

              I've been primal for about 2 1/2 months now and it was actually while coming across information related to it that I read about ties to gallstones/gallbladder issues with diets high in carbs (refined processed SAD kind)...also that the number one surgery in the US that is performed annually is said to be gallbladder removal. I found this very interesting, typical North American diet is high on refined and processed crappy carbs and the number one surgical procedure is gallbladder removal...seemed to make sense to me that they might very well be tied to each other.

              As my doubts continued, I came across information that made my decision all that much easier. I had not suffered a gallbladder attack in nearly a year, I had recently made the change to eating Primal and being very aware of the quality of the food I put in my diet. I just wasn't so sure anymore that having the gallbladder removed was the step to take at this time, so when the surgeon's office called last week, I told them I had a change of heart and was not prepared to have it removed at this time.

              I'm still young enough that I don't want to be saddled with something that may effect my digestion for the rest of my life, the cure seemed almost worse then the problem. If I can tackle this issue through diet, I would much rather do so then lose a part of my body that I actually need more then they think.

              I guess my post doesn't really relate since I never had mine removed, but it is actually after reading posts here that made me seriously rethink what I was agreeing to do. Maybe it will become an issue again down the road, but right now it seems under control and I would rather have a change of heart while I still have my gallbladder, then realize after the fact that I'm worse off then when I had it. I plan on dealing with it from a dietary angle first.

              So to all of you out there that have from time to time posted on this subject, thank you, it helped open my eyes and consider other options before surgery.

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              • #8
                I'm actually having mine taken out on sept. 12th. My gall bladder absolutely does no work at all like nothing goes in or out of there so it is as if it isn't even there at all. I've had no problems eating high fat/low carb for many years and my doc assured me there would be no problem post surgery eating this way either.

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                • #9
                  I have not had my gall bladder removed, but I was have lots of gall bladder problems before going primal. I had multiple, painful gall bladder "attacks". I was a little nervous about what all the fat in my diet would do to my gall bladder. Since about day 5 of eating a primal diet I have had zero gall bladder pain. The only time I had even a twinge was on vacation when I had deep fried, breaded food to days in a row.
                  Using low lectin/nightshade free primal to control autoimmune arthritis. (And lost 50 lbs along the way )

                  http://www.krispin.com/lectin.html

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                  • #10
                    I had my gallbladder out a year before going primal, and I am another person who had trouble with dumping afterwards. I cannot go for a very high fat diet, it still upsets my stomach, so my macros are around 1/3 each calories from fat, protein and carbs, and this suits me well. I tend to be what most would consider slightly low fat primal.

                    And like Jammies said - deep fried anything will set my tummy off
                    Karin

                    A joyful heart is good medicine

                    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

                    Mmmmm. Real food is good.

                    My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread29685.html

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                    • #11
                      I just placed an order for enzymes, I was out of several of the supplements that I take, so I went ahead and added them in. When I first started having attacks before the surgery, I was eating virtually no fat ... at the time, I was in that temporarily lost my fracking mind phase of "no meat, no fat .... "

                      Until reading the article on how the bile affects the digestive system after removal, I was assuming that the too frequent dumping episodes had something to do with a possible cross-contamination with gluten or one of the foods I'm allergic to, except that usually brings about a more severe reaction.
                      I feel like I am finally on track with dealing with this ... 12 years after the fact !

                      I don't have stomach pain with coconut oil or lard, bacon fat or olive oil as far as actual stomach discomfort, but with the SAD versions of things like Crisco and all the other so-called "healthy oils" ... those make me hurt.
                      Everything's shiny, Cap'n. Not to fret.




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                      • #12
                        Great thread. I have wondered about this as well. My gallbladder has been gone since 1999. I seem to digest coconut fat, olive oil and even bacon fat very well, but as you say, but would have problems with the crisco stuff.

                        Although, I do not eat a huge amount of fat, I do try and be sensible with the amount of calories I am consuming. Thus far I haven't had any issues like I did before going primal.

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                        • #13
                          Have been on PB for about 3 months, keeping carbs low. Have lost about 4kg and would like to lose 14kg more. I am just wondering if having a space where my gall bladder should be is affecting fat absorbtion and weight loss. I am particularly struggling with the heavy cream. A couple of years ago I went paleo for three months which meant leaving off dairy completely. I had much more success with weight loss.

                          Just be interested if anyone else has struggled with weight loss on PB if they don't have a gallbladder?

                          Thanks

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                          • #14
                            My husband had his out about a year ago, and just went primal (80% of the time at least) around the beginning of this year. Although I think his diet is actually higher in fat than it was previously, he is doing better than he was before on SAD. After having the surgery, but before going primal, he would get sick sometimes and be running to the bathroom shortly after eating a high-fat SAD meal. The most common cause seemed to be a high-fat fast food meal like the spicy fried chicken sandwich and french fries from Chick-fil-a. Now we frequently have meals like a steak, salad and veggies, all of them with fat on them ... but it's butter, olive oil, lard/tallow. He doesn't have to take any enzymes, he rarely gets a sick stomach, and he's lost about 15 lbs without making any effort to eat less (from 210 to 195, 6'1" tall).

                            So it's just totally anecdotal, but I think that maybe the type of fat makes a difference. For my husband at least, it sure doesn't seem to be the amount overall. I suppose it could also be the lack of grains though, or the fact that meals are higher in protein and lower in carbs (and the carb sources are veggies and some fruits, few nuts).

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