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Gallstones are hard deposits of cholesterol that did not get broken down by the bile in the gallbladder and have formed and grown as more deposits were added. Gallstones may be as small as a grain of sand, or may grow to be as large as a ping-pong ball. Gallstones can be removed surgically, but there are some natural remedies for dissolving and passing gallstones with as little pain as possible.
Prevent gallstones or additional gallstones by avoiding consuming large amounts of fatty foods that are full of cholesterol. The more cholesterol you consume, the harder it is for your gallbladder to break it down, and so gallstones begin to form.
Drink 12 or more glasses of water per day. A large intake of water helps dissolve gallstones and promotes frequent urination, which will remove toxins like cholesterol and flush out organs like the gallbladder.
Eat a more fiber-filled diet. Foods with fiber, like grains and beans, bind waste materials like cholesterol and other fatty substances that our body does not need to absorb, and turn them into excrement. Fiber supplements will help to speed foods through the body so that there is less time for the cholesterol to form into gallstones.
Consume more foods containing vitamin C, such as citrus fruits, because these foods turn cholesterol into bile acid, the acid the gallbladder uses to absorb and dissolve gallstones. Vitamin C can also be taken as a supplement.
Eat foods with high levels of lecithin, a lipid substance that works to break down the fat molecules in food, which helps both in preventing and dissolving gallstones. Lecithin is found in such foods as grains and tofu.
Take bile salts by mouth to dissolve and prevent gallstones. Bile salts help to add more bile acid to the gallbladder so that there is more to combat the deposits of cholesterol existing as gallstones.
Rather than relying on surgery, many gallstones can be dissolved using chemicals and a catheter inserted into the gallbladder. The chemicals are inserted directly into the gallbladder and dissolve the stones. This technique rids the body of gallstones, but will not prevent them. Use this option in conjunction with the steps listed above.