I only have a week to go before my operation to get my gallstones out and it has felt like an eternity since I got them. I have researched as much as I could to educate myself on how to deal with them and prevent anymore attacks, so I am sharing all this information with my fellow gallstone sufferers. I hope you find it as useful as I have and I have only managed to 2 attacks so far, the 1st attack was the diagnosis and the 2nd attack being self inflicted by poor judgement.
Diet was the hardest thing to adjust to as I come from a family of big meat eaters and the use of oil being never ending as it goes on everything (pretty much).
So what is gallstones;
Gallstones are hard, pebble-like deposits that form inside the gallbladder. Gallstones may be as small as a grain of sand or as large as a golf ball.
The cause of gallstones varies. There are two main types of gallstones:
- Stones made of cholesterol, which are by far the most common type. Cholesterol gallstones have nothing to do with cholesterol levels in the blood.
- Stones made of bilirubin, which can occur when red blood cells are being destroyed (hemolysis). This leads to too much bilirubin in the bile. These stones are called pigment stones.
When I got diagnosed with Gallstones I got told that I had to eat clean and fresh foods. So here are two list what to avoid and what you can eat.
The Rule is to eat a low fat diet so always look at the fat totals on the packaging less than 5g of fat per 100g serving is the safest way to go. It was my saving grace!!
You should also be careful on having to much sugar in your daily intake but I didn't worry to much as I thought dealing with fats was bad enough but it's up to you. (Just being lazy I guess)
Foods to avoid
Oils (any type of cooking oils)
Avocado (high Cholesterol)
Eggs (I have used 1 egg white if needed in baking but that's it as they are high in Cholesterol)
Fried Food of any sort
Creamy ice cream
Fatty meats such as duck and lamb, sausages etc
Cheesy pasta sauces / Italian dishes such as lasagne
Breakfast / Energy bars
Salami, ham, prosciutto any type of fatty lunch meats.
Food you can eat
Lite or Skinny Milk
Weight watches food that is 97-98% fat free
Weight-watchers desserts (with < 5% fat)
Any sauces that are less than 5g of fat per 100grams ( I used this rule for pretty much any food and I found I was ok) I found Asian sauces were usually less than 5g of fat as well as BBQ or Tomato sauce.
Wholemeal or grain bread.
Weight watches lite cottage cheese
Smoked salmon ( only 2 slices max or less per day)
Tuna in spring water only
Low fat 98% fat free blueberry, raspberry or Apple cinnamon muffins ( Always double check )
Vegetarian or prawn steamed dumplings
Yoghurt just check with the less than 5g per 100 g rule.
Meat: Chicken (don't eat the skin), lean mined beef, white fish, Turkey or lean eye fillet
Pasta sauces: Most tomato-based sauces contain very little fat (the “light” sauces are actually light on sugar).
Stir fry: Most Asian sauces are fine
Rice, potatoes and pasta will form the bulk of the meal
Toast and jam (no butter!)
Bircher muesli as a breakfast choice if at a cafe was always fine with me.
I found steaming fish, poaching or roasting chicken and using a non stick fry pan for cooking meat was the only way to go, just remembering not to use oil which is not needed in any of these methods of cooking. Marinating fish, chicken or meat was a good way to to make it easier for cook it in a pan or wok.
Here are some ideas in marinating:
Chicken when roasting; 1 lemon juiced, garlic, salt, rosemary and cummin powder
Fish when steaming; lemon grass, garlic, salt and coriander
Eye fillet when in pan; garlic, salt and cumin powder. Cook on each side for 1 minute and then place a lid on and put heat on low. The juices just come out, yummy.
As much as I at times found it very difficult to find something to eat I always took my own little snacks everywhere I went. I also found I lost a lot of weight which I think it was a little weight I needed to loose. I am much wiser as to how to eat a little more cleaner and it has benefited my family too as I really don't want so much unwanted fats in my little girls diet.
There have been times where I am sick of eating so rigid but the thought of having an attack brings me back to reality and so I suck it up pretty much.
The hardest part was going out for dinner which I completely minimised as I found it so difficult to order as you don't know what or how they are cooking the meal with. The one time I did go out I ordered the grilled eye fillet with roasted potatoes and steamed vegies.It was the safest option.
Well I hope this helps in some way and good luck.