ASK DR ELLIE: Will dieting make my gallstones even worse?

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I am 66 and overweight so I want to lose 2st. But I have gallstones. I’ve read that eating too little can make them worse. Shall I avoid a fasting diet?

For those with gallstones – hard deposits that form in the gallbladder – any restrictive diet can be risky.

Both fasting and dramatic weight loss can lead to the development of more gallstones, making the problem worse. But, frustratingly, gallstones are associated with being overweight, so many sufferers may already be in the process of attempting to lose a few pounds.

Gallstones, more common in women over 40, are usually made up of excess cholesterol. They are associated with type 2 diabetes and hormone-replacement therapy.

Roughly eight in ten people don’t know they have them.

With regards to weight loss, the general advice is to keep it to under about 3 lb a week.

Both fasting and dramatic weight loss can lead to the development of more gallstones, making the problem worse (stock image)

Both fasting and dramatic weight loss can lead to the development of more gallstones, making the problem worse (stock image)

Avoid very dramatic weight-loss regimes such as bariatric surgery or very low-calorie diets that involve meal replacements.

Fasting diets work by creating a calorie shortfall because you eat less.

Despite the hype around it, fasting is simply a tool that helps dieters to eat less and therefore lose calories.

There is no reason to believe it is superior to other diets or more likely to be successful.

There’s no magic – people find they work simply because they suit their lifestyle.

Experts suggest a low-fat diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables but low in refined carbohydrates (such as white pasta) will help with gallstones.

TINA SHOWS WHAT LOVE’S GOT TO DO WITH IT... 

Tina Turner, pictured last year at the opening night in the West End of the musical Tina

Tina Turner, pictured last year at the opening night in the West End of the musical Tina

Music icon Tina Turner is proof that there is plenty of life to be lived after suffering a serious illness.

The What’s Love Got To Do With It singer, who turned 80 last week, has overcome intestinal cancer, a stroke and kidney failure, yet looked more vivacious than ever in a video she posted on Twitter to mark her birthday.

But most remarkably, Tina – pictured, above, last year at the opening night in the West End of the musical Tina – owes her recovery, in part, to love.

In 2016, with her kidney function deteriorating rapidly, Tina’s husband, German music producer Erwin Bach, gave her one of his kidneys.

It’s a truly unique gift – only 1,000 Britons a year donate a kidney to another person while they’re still alive.

Tina’s husband has given her a new lease of life. How’s that for a festive love

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