Life without a Gallbladder

After gall bladder removal:

It is not uncommon to have digestive difficulties after gallbladder removal. The main reason is usually a difficulty in handling fats in the diet. Fat and certain fat-soluble vitamins require bile in order to be absorbed.

Internal liver

The liver manufactures bile and sends it through the hepatic duct to the gallbladder where it is stored and concentrated. The gallbladder holds bile in reserve for those times when we consume greater amounts of fat and need additional bile for efficient digestion.

As fats travel through the gastrointestinal tract, the gallbladder secretes bile into the common bile duct that empties into the first portion of the small intestine where it performs the first stage of fat digestion. The bile breaks the fat molecules into smaller particles so as they travel through the small intestine they can undergo further digestion and finally become fully absorbed.

The bile salts contained in bile help emulsify fats. In the absence of a fully functioning gallbladder, the liver continues to produce bile but the body can no longer draw upon its “bile reserve”.

After the gallbladder is removed, bile is still produced by the liver, but is released in a continuous, slow trickle into the intestine. Thus, when eating a meal that is high in fat content, there may not be an adequate amount of bile in the intestine to properly handle the normal absorption process.

The change in intestinal bile concentration during high-fat intake may cause diarrhea or bloating, because excess fat in the intestine will draw more water into the intestine, and because bacteria then digests the fat which produces gas.

The treatment for digestive problems after removal will follow the reason for the problem.

Once a gallbladder is removed it is important to be on bile acid supplements. They need to be taken with every meal in which fat is consumed otherwise your fats will not be properly emulsified and absorbed.


Cholacol is a brand of bile salts made by a company called Standard Process.

These are whole food supplements that get absorbed and used by the body.

The beneficial properties of the collinsonia root combined with purified, concentrated bile salts work together to enhance dietary fat metabolism and encourage absorption in the intestines.

Cholacol contains concentrated bile salts and collinsomia root to aid in dietary fat metabolism and absorption.

How Cholacol Keeps you Healthy:

It supports healthy dietary fat metabolism and absorption. The bile salts in Cholacol contribute to the further breakdown of fasts in the intestines and provides a concentrated source of bile salts as needed.

It reduces the severity of gastric discomfort. When greater amounts of fat are consumed in the absence of a properly functioning gallbladder, abdominal discomfort often ensures. The bile salts and collisonia root contained in Cholacol can help reduce the bloating and full feeling after eating and promotes healthy digestion.

It simulates gallbladder function to encourage the release of bile to aid in the breakdown of fats.

Each tablet supplies 230 mg collinsonia root powder and 115 mg purified bovine bile salts.


All the benefits of whole foods in a convenient form

Purified, concentrated bile salts enhance fat metabolism

Collinsonia root promotes health liver function

Vitamins, minerals and nutrients work together for maximum effect.

Therapeutic Use: Good for people who are missing their gall bladder, Digestion, Gas, Bloating, Constipation, Nutrient absorption, Food allergies

As a dietary supplement, take 1 tablet with each meal.

Proprietary Blend: 721 mg
Collinsonia (root) and purified bovine bile salts.

Other Ingredients: Honey and calcium stearate.

Remember when you are using a whole food supplement like Cholacol you are getting a supplement that the body can absorb and use. Unlike laboratory supplements that you may absorb 1%, these supplements have all the co-factors that food has so that the body can use them.

To read about Standard Process go here

Order: Cholacol (90 tablets)

Note: there are cheaper bile salts available but we are uncertain if they will give you what you need. The formulas are cheaper as they use cheaper ingredients. See the article Buying Less Expensive Vitamins is it worth it?


Book: The Gall Bladder Survival Guide - How to Live a Normal Life with a Missing or Dysfunctional Gallbladder


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