From the limited evidence available, changes to your diet and losing weight(if you're overweight) may help prevent gallstones.
Because of the role cholesterol appears to play in the formation of gallstones, it is advisable to avoid eating too many foods with a high saturated fatcontent.
Foods high in saturated fat include:
A healthy, balanced diet is recommended. This includes plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables (at least five portions a day) and wholegrains.
There's also evidence that regularly eating nuts, such as peanuts or cashews, can help reduceyour risk of developing gallstones.
Drinking small amounts of alcohol may alsohelp reduce your risk of gallstones. However, you shouldn't regularly drink more than 14 units of alcohol a week as this can lead to liver problems and other health conditions. Regularly drinking any amount of alcohol can increase the risk to your health.
You should control your weight by eating a healthy diet and taking plenty of regular exercise.
However, avoid low-calorie, rapid-weight-loss diets. There's evidence they can disrupt your bile chemistry and increase your risk of developing gallstones. A more gradual weight loss plan is recommended.
Gallstones are small stones, usually made of cholesterol, that form in the gallbladder. In most cases they do not cause any symptoms and do not need to be treated.
The most common symptom of gallstones is sudden, severe abdominal pain, known as biliary colic.
Gallstones are thought to be caused by an imbalance in the chemical make-up of bile inside the gallbladder. Bile is a liquid produced by the liver to aid digestion
Gallstones are often discovered during tests for a different condition, as they often don't cause any symptoms.
The treatment plan for gallbladder conditions will depend on how the symptoms are affecting your daily life.
In a small number of people with gallstones, serious problems can develop if the gallstones cause a severe blockage or move into another part of the digestive system.