One of the main jobs of the gallbladder is to allow the body to properly process fat. For this reason, once this organ is removed, patients often feel uncomfortable after ingesting a high-fat meal. The best dietary changes to make after a cholecystectomy include avoiding or reducing the amount of foods that are high in fat, including red meat, full-fat dairy products and fried items. A good diet after gallbladder surgery should include mostly fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products. In addition, vegetable oils that have not been processed are often good for the body after gallbladder removal, because they can help get rid of toxins.
Keeping fat to a minimum is usually advised when creating a diet for someone who's had gallbladder surgery and, since red meat can have a lot of animal fat, it should be eaten sparingly, if at all. Pork and chicken, while not as hard to digest as red meat, also should be minimized in a diet after gallbladder surgery since both still have animal fat and protein. Other foods that the body may have trouble digesting after gallbladder removal include chocolate, full-fat dairy products and fried foods. Spicy foods and soda also can make patients uncomfortable, because their liver has to work particularly hard to break down fat and remove the resultant toxins from the body.
Once patients are aware of the foods to avoid following gallbladder removal, they should learn the foods that are best to eat, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. While any raw products are usually healthy, patients should pay particular attention to foods such as sweet potatoes, avocados and apples, because they all provide enough fiber to assist the body in getting rid of toxins. Whole grains can perform the same function, so cereal and bread that claim to be made with this product also can be a good addition to the diet. Low-fat milk, eggs and yogurt are all recommended in a diet after gallbladder surgery, because they allow patients to get their daily dairy allotment without ingesting too much fat for the body to break down. Finally, patients are encouraged to eat fish in place of red meat, pork and other fattier meats, because it provides some of the nutrition the body needs without overwhelming the liver with fat.
Another healthy addition to a diet after gallbladder surgery is vegetable oil, as long as it is unprocessed. Hemp seed oil and flax seed oil are two examples of products that contain healthy fats, such as omega-6 and omega-3. Patients can use them as salad dressing or take them in capsule form each day. Their slippery consistency allows them to go through the body easily, collecting toxins as they exit and not building up like other fats do.