Monday, August 15, 2016

The Functions of the Gallbladder

Gallbladder Function and Health 

The gallbladder is a small sac-shaped organ beneath the liver, in which bile is stored after secretion by the liver and before release into the intestine.  Bile is a bitter greenish-brown alkaline fluid that aids digestion and is secreted by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. The liver makes bile from cholesterol. When the gallbladder is sick (or has been removed surgically) we may experience signs such as:
  • Anorexia or bulimia
  • Belching
  • Is your gallbladder healthy?
  • Chest pain
  • Constipation or loose bowels
  • Dizziness
  • Enlarged abdomen
  • Gas and indigestion
  • Hiccoughs
  • Intestinal pain
  • Nausea even at the thought of eating high fat foods
  • Nightmares
  • Pain on the right side of the lower rib cage
  • Pain under the right scapula (shoulder blade)
  • Skipping heartbeat
If you are concerned about any of these gallbladder symptoms and want to discuss your concerns, you can meet with me, Victoria Smith in person or by phone or online. A well care visit is $60. 

Use promo code BLADDER to get $10 off your initial visit. My goal is to help you achieve significant healing! 

If the liver does not secret bile, the following may result:

  • The fats in our diet would not be digested, since bile emulsifies the fats and breaks it down for the body to absorb it.
  • We would have higher levels of cholesterol in our bodies, revealed in blood tests.
  • Bilirubin is made from our dead red blood cells and is a pigment. It is a greenish/brownish substance.  It is also part of the bile. If the liver doesn't secrete the bile, the bilirubin would stay in the blood instead of being converted by the liver into a soluble form and flow with the bile. 
  • Our skin and the whites of our eyes may appear more yellow in color. (Jaundice)
  • Our urine and the stools would be whiter in color since the bilirubin in the bile doesn't reach the intestines.
  • If the fats are not emulsified, then they are not being absorbed well. Many vitamins are fat soluble.  
  • Vitamins and medications also would not be absorbed from our foods and this could affect our health.  
  • The body main source of energy is glucose, but fats also play a part in this energy source.  Without fat our bodies could lack the energy the cells need to function well. 
  • Bile is constantly being made by the liver.  If bile stays in the liver instead of flowing, it would destroy the liver cells and they would die and form scar tissue in the liver.  This may block the flow of blood through the liver and the liver may cease to function. 
  • The liver cells help with over 500 functions to keep the body well. A damaged liver is is life threatening and should be treated or replaced.  
Here are some suggestions to help aide gallbladder pain:
  • Do not overeat.
  • Begin meals with the bitter food, as it stimulates gallbladder to release bile, which is essential
    in digestion.   Examples of bitter foods:  arugula, bitter melon, coffee, curly endive, dandelion greens, dill, Jerusalem artichokes, kale, saffron, sesame seeds, turmeric. 
  • Eat a diet high in fiber, with a lot of vegetables.
  • Avoid refined carbohydrates, including sugar and white flour.
  • Consume Omega 3 fatty acids and other polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats daily, such as Tuna Omega 3 oil, olive oil, avocados, coconut oil.
  • Supplement choline intake with meals.  Choline makes the bile more liquefied so that it passes easier through the bile duct (which is really small and can get irritated and blocked, thus causing gall bladder “attacks.”) It also helps with brain function and helps prevent brain fog. Choline bitartrate, choline inositol are both good, but I use Standard Process brand of choline.
  • Avoid trans fats.
  • Avoid trigger foods like pork, eggs, coffee and dairy, until gallbladder cleansed.
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of water daily.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Lose excess weight, but slowly.
Schedule nutritional consult to evaluate supplement aide and save $10 with promo code BLADDER.

The following Standard Process supplements are excellent for gallbladder health:
  • Cholacol - Supports gallbladder function, healthy elimination and aides both diarrhea and constipation. Gallbladder removed?  This is a source of bile salts which helps enzymes break down fats.  Helpful to take with every meal if gallbladder removed. 
  • Choline - is a water soluble essential nutrient, usually grouped within a B-Complex vitamin.  Thins bile, flushing through gallbladder.  Particularly beneficial for skin conditions such as acne, eczema, menstrual migraines, and for those who experience nausea with A-F Betafood.  The three main physiological purposes include 1) structural integrity and signaling roles for cell membranes 2) cholinergic neurotransmission (acetylchoine synthesis) and 3) major source for methyl groups via its metabolite, trimethylglycine (betaine) which participates in the S-adenosylmenthionine (SAMe) synthesis pathways.
  • A-F Betafood - Supports normal processing of fats, for cholesterol-metabolism support.  Aides bile production and bile flow in gallbladder.   Best taken at mealtime with Zypan (or Multizyme for acid sensitive individuals).  Especially useful for endurance.  Ideal for liver congestion when fats cause digestion problems, from blocked bile route. 
  • Livton - Supports healthy liver and gallbladder function.  Supports normal processing of hormones.  Encourages healthy bowel function.  Encourages healthy function of the organs of elimination.  Helps maintain healthy blood.  Great for those who use too much alcohol.  Do not take at same time of day as iron supplements or if pregnant or lactating. 
To learn more about Standard Process or purchase these supplements, go to our Standard Process webpage or contact our office for a Standard Process mini-consultation at 859-282-0022.

Disclaimer: These recommendations are dosages are based on the opinions of Victoria Smith, Practitioner. The following statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Take care of your Gallbladder to ensure digestion of dairy products.
The gallbladder serves as a reservoir for the bile that is produced by the liver.   Bile is necessary to digest and metabolize fatty acids. The extra bile storage allows the body to effectively metabolize fat-rich foods such as beef, cheese, eggs, butter and so on.   When the liver and gallbladder become congested with toxins the secretion of bile is impaired; and, the digestion of fats slows down or halts.   This imbalance can cause bile material imbalances that lead to gallstone formation.

  • Check all that apply to you:
oPain on right side, just below breast bone
oPain after eating fatty meal
oBloating, belching, gas
oFoul smelling bowel movements
oLow energy after eating

Gallstones are crystalline formations of cholesterol and calcium that are formed within the gallbladder and biliary tracts.   These stones can vary widely in size from as small as a grain of salt to nearly the size of a golf ball.   Gallstones are a sign of incomplete liver detoxification and pose a significant threat to the body.   Gallstones can be naturally eliminated with an anti-inflammatory diet and cleansing routines.
Most individuals do not experience any outward signs or symptoms of gallstones. As the stones increase in size, they hamper digestion and may cause mild to severe pain in the upper right abdomen area, as well as other symptoms listed above. The pain sometimes is felt as a burning sensation that radiates across the breastbone area. It may or may not be accompanied by constipation.

Gallbladder Infections
Bacteria in GallBladderWhen gallstones develop, they sometimes cause infectious organisms such as E Coli and Bacteroids to be lodged in the gallbladder. In turn, this causes further inflammatory stress to the liver and gallbladder. These infections can create life threatening issues and must be addressed without delay. Fresh vegetables, fruits, fermented foods and probiotics may help flush these infectious bacteria and reduce the severity of any infection. As a disclaimer, I always remind readers to visit their physician if symptoms arise.

A healthy diet and lifestyle is necessary to inhibit gallstone formation. A diet rich in phyto nutrient rich organic fruits and vegetables, grass-fed animal products and healthy fat sources such as chia seeds, flax seeds, avocados, coconut and olive oils may improve the health of the gallbladder.  Raw cheese from grass-fed cows and goats is rich content of omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin K2 and D3, which are nutritiously support the gallbladder and helps regulate calcium metabolism to inhibit the formation of gallstones.

Foods that are rich in organic acids and natural enzymes are especially important for the entire digestive system including the liver and gall bladder. These foods include apple cider vinegar (ACV), fresh squeezed lemon, lime and apple juices, kombucha, kimchi and red cabbage sauerkraut. Naturally probiotic enriched, raw dairy products such fermented whey and kefir are extremely beneficial.

Breaking The Fast: A Daily Flush
Did you know that breakfast really means ‘breaking the fast?’ Each evening after dinner, it is important to not eat, until morning when the daily fast is broken. During the fast time, the digestive tract, especially the liver, is working hard to regenerate. Liver health is dependent upon this regular fasting cycle to effectively cleanse and detoxify.  A 12-hour fast between dinner and breakfast is a great daily habit for a healthy lifestyle. If one were to finish their final solid food meal at 8 p.m. they should not attempt another solid food meal until at least 8 a.m. This gives the body four hours to digest and metabolize the food and then 8 hours for the liver to cleanse. Breaking your daily fast with lemon or lime water, 30 or more minutes before solid food, further detoxifies the liver.

Once you incorporate this 12-hour daily detox cycle into your lifestyle you can choose to increase this period of time. As your body becomes more accustomed these regular mini-fasts, increase two to three 16-hour liquid fasts each week and even a 24 hour liquid fast will keep the liver well flushed.

A 16-hour fast may include dinner ending at 6pm and breaking the fast with lemon water at 10am, then a solid breakfast at 10:30am.

These fasting periods are much easier than most people believe. Many individuals will drink fresh vegetable juices, functional beverages made with fermented whey, kombucha and water with lemon. The fluid and nutrients supply the body with very clean energy that enhances the liver's ability to purge toxins and facilitate bowel movements.

Anyone with pronounced and symptomatic gallstones may benefit by going on a liquid diet with lots of water with fresh lemon juice, ACV, fermented whey, coconut kefir and fresh organic vegetable juices. Try to limit solid food to one meal per day with very moderate portions of anti-inflammatory foods.

Gallbladder Flush
This gallbladder flush is not for everyone, but certainly some do it yourself-ers will enjoy trying it.  From reports, it works great for some while others do not notice changes.  A gallbladder flush contradicts many modern medical viewpoints. Gallstones are thought to be formed in the gallbladder and not the liver.   Most medical professionals believe that there are few gallstones, not thousands, that can contribute to symptoms. By the time that acute pain attacks occur, there are typically stones in both the liver and the gallbladder and are large and sufficiently calcified to see on an x-ray, causing inflammation. Typically when the gallbladder is removed, the acute attacks disappear, even though bursitis, other pains and digestive problems remain.

Even people that have had their gallbladder removed produce plenty of green, bile coated stones, with a gallbladder flush. Anyone who cares to dissect their stones can see that the concentric circles and crystals of cholesterol match textbook pictures of ‘gallstones’ exactly.

Gallstones and liver stones are formed by stagnant bile. Insufficient water intake can cause stagnant bile as well as stress and fear. There are plenty of people with chronic illnesses who have reported releasing thousands of gallstones with this flush, that were obviously congesting the bile ducts of the liver. Some stones may impact the gallbladder as well. By removing stones through a series of cleanses and subsequently maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle, the liver and gallbladder may be able to restore their natural efficiency and most symptoms of discomfort or disease in the body may subside. Allergies may lessen or disappear, back pain dissipates and energy and a feeling of well being improve dramatically. Cleansing the liver bile ducts from gallstones can be one of the most important and powerful things you may do for your health.

Individuals with pervasive gallstone problems may clean out their gallbladders by doing this flush twice monthly. For those who do not present symptoms, it is still a good idea to do a flush for prevention, a couple of times a year. Many people lost weight, allergies disappear and a number of ailments are alleviated by flushing stones.

Gall Stones have been reported from teeny tiny, to pea-sized to the size of marbles! The color of the stones vary as well as the size. Some are golden (tan), some bright fresh green pea colored and others dark olive green, black or off white. The hardness varies as well. Some are very soft and fatty while others are hard and crusty with an emerald green inside that has a crystalline pater. Some stones are completely calcified. You may wish to take your stones to your physician, in a glass jar.

It is imperative to wait at least two weeks between flushes, so that the stones have time to roll forward, taking the place of those that were previously flushed.

Upon waking, the day of the flush, eat only fruits and vegetables, being careful not to consume any fat at all. It is acceptable to consume only fresh lemonade, made with stevia (or xylitol), freshly squeezed lemons and filtered water.
gallstone flush instructions

Throughout the day, drink at least 64 - 128 ounces of water. Warm water is best. You may add fresh lemon or lime to the warm water.

At 4pm, stop eating solid food and drinking water.

At 8pm, mix 1 teaspoon of Epsom salts in one cup of organic apple juice. Stir and drink very quickly. You may wish to hold your nose while drinking down very fast.

At 10pm, drink another cup of organic apple juice with 1 teaspoon Epsom salts.

At midnight, get completely ready for bed. Brush your teeth, have a book by your bedside (if you read yourself to sleep), climb into your pajamas. Have ready in a glass jar, next to your bed ¾ cup of freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice and ½ cup extra virgin olive oil. Just before you climb into bed, shake your jar of juice and oil until frothy and drink very quickly. Immediately lie down on your right side. If you are more comfortable on your back, that is okay as well. Be sure to stay VERY still for at least 20 minutes before changing positions. Your stomach will gurgle as the stones are dislodged. Go to sleep.

In the morning, sometime after, or when you naturally wake up, get up and have another drink of Epsom salt and apple juice. Most likely you will have a bowel movement.   Liver stones float, but many people do not see any stones until the second bowel movement of the day. Also, stones can be trapped in feces.

Yes, some people use an old colander to strain their bowel movements, to look for stones.   With a first time flush, people have reported anywhere from 10 to hundreds of stones being eliminated. If you wish to keep them, rinse and place in a glass jar, then freeze. Some people stop eliminating stones after 5 or 9 or even 20 flushes.

As you use this flush, you may adjust the amount of Epsom salts, to produce soft bowel movements. Some people need 1 tablespoon in each apple drink, while others do best with half that amount. The goal is very soft or watery, large volumes of bowel movements.

The flush may cause you to feel weak, as diarrhea can dehydrate and lower energy levels. You may drink some juice 15 minutes after your Epsom salts drink in the morning. Then move onto fruits and solid foods even later in the morning.   Remember, do not repeat this flush more than twice monthly.

Don't forget, you can use promo code BLADDER to get $10 off your initial visit with me, when we can discuss all of your symptoms in more detail. This visit can be in person, by phone or online.

Disclaimer: These recommendations are dosages are based on the opinions of Victoria Smith, Practitioner. The following statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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