Take Our Gallbladder Quiz
1. Do you still have your gallbladder?
When people lose their gallbladder, they have lost the main storage unit in the body for the bile. Thirty years ago, when people lost their gallbladder, the doctor would prescribe bile salts to replace what they have lost. If you have a difficult time now eating fats and have symptoms like loose stools and pain or discomfort when you eat fat, you may want to take bile salts with each meal to replace what you are missing. Absorption of fats is very important in the making of vitamins, hormones, and supplying fat that is needed for certain organs like the brain, eyes and nervous system. Eating beets artichokes, carrots and apples can help keep the bile thinner and the gallbladder regulated.
2. Do you get pain if you drink milk, ice cream or cream sauce?
Fats found in milk or cream-based products have a high fat content, and bile helps prepare fats for absorption. When you do not have enough bile produced or when bile can become too thick “sludgy” it cannot get into the GI tract to help emulsify fats. Overtime, this sludge can get hardened which causes gallstones. You may need to take a bile salt supplement or a supplement with an herb that thins the bile. Eating food like beets, carrots, apples, and artichokes may also help thin bile. Milk products can cause similar symptoms, and problems as you age, your body makes less lactase enzyme, and you could also have a lactose intolerance. Eating foods like beets, apples and carrots that can keep your gallbladder and bile healthy.
3. Do you get watery diarrhea or loose stool after eating a high fat or greasy meal?
When fat is not properly absorbed, the high concentration which reaches your large intestine creates water entering and mixing with the stool. This will cause a watery, loose stool. Taking bile salts or a digestive product that contains a bile thinner can help your body emulsify and absorb fats.
4. Have you ever had gallstones?
Gallstones are a sign that your bile is too thick or “sludgy” and/or the gallbladder may not have the hormones it needs to squeeze the bile into the GI tract. Bile salts may help this condition. Taking herbs, supplements and foods that help thin the bile may also help. A gallbladder flush may help to release gallstones as well.
5. Do you have light colored stools?
Fats are of a lighter color and this is a possible indication that you may not be properly digesting and absorbing fats. Gallstones have a greenish tint to them, and you also see those in the stools sometimes as well. Bile salts or taking herbs that help thin the bile can help you to emulsify and absorb the fats the body needs.
6. Have you lost a lot of weight in a short period of time?
Cholesterol and fatty acids make up the bile. When you lose weight quickly, fatty acids go to the liver to be released from the body. When fat is released too quickly into the gallbladder, the bile may become thick and sludgy and produce stones or blockages. This may mean you need bile salt replacements or herbs and foods that thin the bile. Beets, artichokes, carrots and apples can thin the bile. Research has shown bile salts are effective in helping many different conditions.
7. Do your stools float?
Fats float in water, so this may mean there is too much fat in the stools. This could be an indication that you need bile salt replacement or a supplement to thin the bile. There are foods like beets, apples, carrots and artichokes that will also help thin bile. Thinning bile may help release more bile into the digestive tract where it is needed to help emulsify and absorb fats. If your stools are medium to dark brown and are not floating, you probably are digesting and absorbing fats.