Intermittent Fasting and the Gallbladder

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 08/31/2023

a drawing that says intermittent fasting

You’re tempted to try intermittent fasting, right?

You want its benefits:

  • Weight loss
  • More energy
  • Better mental clarity

But you’ve come across information stating that fasting will put you at risk for gallbladder dysfunction and gallstones.

And you wonder, is intermittent fasting healthy for your gallbladder?


Not only does fasting support the health of your gallbladder, but it’s actually therapeutic.

In this article:-


The Role Your Gallbladder Plays In Digestive Health

First, some background on the gallbladder. It’s a small, pear-shaped organ on the right side of your abdomen, just beneath your liver.

Normally, your liver produces a sufficient amount of bile, a fluid that promotes the digestion of fatty acids and fats. In between meals, the bile is sent to your gallbladder, where it’s stored and concentrated before releasing it into the small intestine where it helps digest the fats you eat.

illustration of the gallbladder containing gallstones

Now, if you follow a typical American high-carbohydrate diet, you may be prone to gallstones, which are small hard masses formed from bile cholesterol and bilirubin. They can become lodged in the bile ducts of the gallbladder, leading to severe pain and blockage. In some cases, surgery is required to remove the stones and blockage.

Doesn’t sound like fun, does it?

Gallstones have two primary causes, both of which are

Serious complications can result if the gallstones block the bile ducts. Please seek emergency medical help immediately if you experience the symptoms of ongoing pain, nausea, fever, and chills.

You can tell that keeping your gallbladder healthy and functioning well is vital for your health. So let’s take a look at how fasting does this.


Here’s How Intermittent Fasting Supports Gallbladder Health

Intermittent fasting helps your body recover its ability to make sufficient bile, and get it concentrated in your gallbladder for the period of time when you’re fasting. Then, when you next eat, it’s released in a strong enough concentrate to aid your digestion.

The bile can best contribute to healthy digestion when it’s concentrated, because the more concentrated it is, the better it can help you digest fats.

If, instead of fasting, you’re eating numerous times per day, your gallbladder pumps bile into your intestine every time you eat. This doesn’t permit time for it to sit in your gallbladder for long enough to enhance its concentration. You experience problems digesting the fat you eat.

As well, when you eat several times a day, you’re not only depleting your bile, but also raising your Fat Storing Hormone each time you eat. Over and over, all day every day, your Fat Storing Hormone spikes in response to each meal. You put yourself at risk not only for gallstones but also for the pre-diabetic condition of Fat Storing Hormone resistance, as I mentioned.

Fasting will support a healthy gallbladder, and there’s one more step you can take to enhance the effects of intermittent fasting.

I’ll explain.


Why You Want To Combine Intermittent Fasting With The Keto Diet

Combining fasting with the Healthy KetoTM diet means you’ll eat more healthy fats. Consuming fat triggers your body into producing more bile; remember, bile’s role is to aid with fat digestion.

a photo of foods typically found on the keto diet

Then, eating less frequently means you release bile on a schedule that allows it to remain long enough in the gallbladder to become concentrated. And subsequently, the concentrated bile helps to break down the higher amount of fat you’ll be eating.

See how fasting and keto reinforce each other for a healthy gallbladder? 

I know, sometimes people will warn you about what they perceive as the dangers of fasting. They’ll tell you it’s like starving yourself. You’ll lose muscle. You’ll ruin your metabolism. And so on. But these fasting myths are just that - myths.

By contrast, it’s unhealthy to overeat five times a day and graze all evening before bedtime. You’ll feel stuffed. Your liver will get congested, which can lead to problems like non-alcoholic fatty liver disease that can cause liver dysfunction because of inflammation and scarring.

You definitely don’t want to put yourself at risk for this disease, and one of the best ways to keep it from developing is to adopt both intermittent fasting and the keto diet.


You Can Fast And Have Gallbladder Health Too

There’s no reason for you to not fast and give yourself a chance to experience its benefits.

You want to experience significant weight loss, have more energy, and clear away the brain fog.

Not to mention get your Fat Storing Hormone levels to normal, if they’ve been chronically high and if you’ve developed Fat Storing Hormone resistance.

Your gallbladder will thank you for taking steps to support its health. Your digestion will be on point, easily able to handle the higher amount of healthy fat you’ll eat when you also go on the keto diet.

No need to hesitate. You can start right away!

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Disclaimer: Our educational content is not meant or intended for medical advice or treatment.

Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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