Have PCOS but Lost My Gallbladder

Your newsletter was informative, as usual. I'm wondering if you've done any research on ways to help PCOSers without gallbladders.

A girl can only eat so much fish before she wants steak and chicken, etc, so how do I get my body to process healthy fats and proteins without gaining weight from it?

Have you ever recommended this Skinny Fiber to anyone trying to lose weight on your eating plan, who is actually gaining because of a lack of gallbladder? Or ... have you ever recommended diet pills or counting calories? Have you ever heard of the gallbladder-less taking papaya enzyme to help digestion and absorption?

Thanks in advance,

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Fatty acid profile test?
by: PCOS Editor

As far as PCOS is concerned, nothing is cut and dried. It's really complex. The body is full of feedback loops so that something that is a "cause" and also be a "consequence".

A major way to control both polycystic ovary syndrome and weight is to eat plenty of the right kinds of fats and cut out the refined carbs. Now that the gallbladder is gone, it's more difficult to assimilate the fats needed for improving health.

It may be helpful to get an essential fatty acid profile lab test, just to find out the extent and type of fat imbalance in her body. Then, the appropriate fats can be given in smallish amounts in hopes they can be absorbed. The lab may be able to refer you to a doctor who knows how to do this. There are a number of labs that perform this test. Do a search online or ask a doctor.

by: Anonymous

My daughter had her gallbladder out at 2 years old due to a liver tumor that had wrapped around it. she has since been struggling with extreme weight issues, so her weight gain came AFTER removal of the organ. She has since been diagnosed with PCOS, and I think there is a real connection between her ability to process fats and sugars, and this new diagnosis.

So to say weight gain is more likely the cause of gall bladder issues, than the other way around is not so cut and dried. my daughter is proof that removal causes gain...and lots of it if you're not careful.

Opinion as to how we can treat this without hormone replacement... I feel treating one would surely help treat the other?

Fiber product or diet pills if no gallbladder?
by: PCOS Editor

Hi Laura,

I haven't done any research into lack of a gallbladder and PCOS. I imagine gallbladder removal is a consequence of being overweight, not a cause of it.

An excellent way to avoid gaining weight with any dietary protein is to have a lot of vegetables with it. Five servings of whole vegetables per day is the daily minimum.

The fastest way to gain weight and keep it on is to consume a liberal amount of grain products. Therefore they should be minimized. The other main factor in weight gain is added sweeteners in processed foods and beverages. Sweeteners and highly refined grain products cause the liver to become congested with fat. The result is insulin resistance and inflammation, which are two direct causes of the symptoms of PCOS.

I never recommend counting calories. That concept is misguided and completely out of date. What's better for you -- 30 calories of white bread or 15 calories of almonds? The answer is pretty obvious. The nutritional content and fiber content of the diet are more important considerations.

I stay completely away from any meal replacement "shake" product like skinnyfiberplus that is based solely on marketing hype. There are hundreds of these products on the market. You have no clue what's really in these products, nor how effective they really are. I prefer medical foods produced by manufacturers who sell primarily to health practitioners; they tend to have the highest quality products with the greatest efficacy. Moreover, meal replacement should ideally be conducted under the supervision of a health professional.

Ditto with "diet pills". There are hundreds of these products out there. There is almost no way to separate the possibly good products from the crappy ones. For the most part, it's marketing hype and the dosages are too low to be effective or the ingredients, especially herbal ingredients, are of such poor quality that they are utterly worthless. Remember, no one is regulating these folks so you have no way of knowing what's inside these products.

However, there are probably 20-30 substances that are suggested by research to aid with weight or appetite control. An example is l-carnitine, an amino acid that is part of the fat-burning mechanism inside the cell. But I wouldn't call it a diet pill. It's simply a substance that assists the fat-burning process if you are deficient in carnitine.

Papaya enzymes may help a little with digestion. Enzyme therapy is a small side-branch of medicine, where different kinds and amounts of enzymes are formulated to treat certain health problems in addition to digestion. A much more effective enzyme than papaya would be something like Spectrazyme (www.metagenics.com/mp/products/spectrazyme).

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