Being diagnosed with gallstones can be a scary thing, but before you start worrying about possible surgery, remember there may be other alternatives. Your doctor may have recommendations on how to dissolve gallstones with home remedies. Changes in your diet may help you naturally pass them from your gallbladder, helping alleviate the abdomen, shoulder or back pain you may be experiencing. Unless you need emergency surgery, you should give these remedies a chance.
8 Home Remedies to Dissolve Gallstones
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is acidic in nature and can assist in reducing your pain while dissolving gallstones. The vinegar can also help prevent the stones from developing in the first place by keeping your liver from making cholesterol deposits.
- Add one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to one glass of apple juice. Drink the mixture. In about 15 minutes, you should start to feel relief. Or mix one teaspoon of lemon juice and two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar with a glass of warm water. Drink first thing in the morning before you eat.
2. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice has multiple properties that makes it a great alternative on how to dissolve gallstones. It contains vitamin C, which promotes the body's disposal of waste products. It inhibits your liver's ability to make cholesterol and makes the existing amount in your system water soluble. Pectin in the juice can help relieve pain.
- Squeeze four lemons and drink the juice every day for a week. Make sure to do so on an empty stomach and drink a full glass of water after. Or add four tablespoons of lemon juice to an 8-ounce glass of warm water. Drink on an empty stomach every day for a few weeks or until your body eliminates the gallstones.
Peppermint has long been known to help with digestion. In addition to encouraging the flow digestive juices and bile, it contains terpene. This compound is considered effective in dissolving gallstones. Peppermint can also help relieve gallbladder pain and muscle spasms related to an attack.
- Bring one cup of water to a boil. Remove from heat and mix in one teaspoon of dried or one tablespoon of fresh peppermint leaves. Place cover over pot and let the mixture steep for five minutes. Strain the fluid to remove loose leaves and mix in one teaspoon of honey. Drink the warm tea twice a day for up to six weeks.
4. Vegetable Juice
If you are having gallstone issues, it is imperative to eliminate fatty and fried foods from your diet. Find a diet based on vegetable and fruit juices and follow it for about two weeks. Some consider a juice drink made of cucumber, beet root and carrots good for a gallstone cleanse. The high content of water in cucumbers assists with detoxing the gallbladder and liver. Beet root helps cleanse your liver and the vitamin C in carrots boosts your immune system.
- With a juice extractor, obtain the juice from one cucumber, one beet root and four carrots. Mix the juices and for two weeks drink it twice a day.
A soluble fiber made from the husks of seeds, psyllium is considered an effective treatment for gallstones. Fiber binds itself to bile cholesterol, which prevents the formation of gallstones. It also stimulates regular bowel movements and prevents constipation, which helps reduce your chances of gallstone congestion.
Consider a way on how to dissolve gallstones with the following:
- Add one tablespoon of psyllium power to a room temperature glass of water. Make sure to mix well. Drink twice a day until your gallstones have been eliminated. Remember, it is very important to drink a lot of fluids, particularly water, when taking psyllium due to its absorption properties.
Dandelion contains taraxacin, which is known to promote liver bile excretion. The compound also assists in the breakdown of fat and detoxification of the liver. If your liver is working right, it helps your gallbladder do the same. However, avoid dandelion if you are diabetic.
- Pour one cup of hot water over one teaspoon of dried dandelion root. Cover cup for five minutes. Strain the mixture. Mix in one teaspoon of honey. Drink up to three times a day for about two weeks.
- Another way to prepare dandelion tea is to mix one teaspoon of Oregon grape root, two teaspoons of marshmallow root and four cups of water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes. Add one teaspoon of dried peppermint leaves and two teaspoons of dried dandelion leaves to the mixture, cover and steep for 10 – 15 minutes. Strain the mixture and enjoy drinking throughout the day.
7. Diet and Lifestyle Changes for Gallstones
When considering how to dissolve gallstones with home remedies, you must make diet and lifestyle changes. If you do not, your chances of developing new stones after dissolving existing ones greatly increases.
Some things that might help include:
- Lose weight.
- Eat frequent small meals, instead of three large meals a day.
- Drink plenty of water, preferably 8-10 glasses daily.
- Eat fiber to avoid constipation, which promotes gallstones.
- Add spices like dried ginger, turmeric and black pepper to your dishes to stimulate your liver.
- Add citrus fruit and other fruits and vegetables full of vitamin C to your diet.
- Drink 1 – 2 cups of coffee a day to promote the flow of bile.
- Take time to plan your meals so that your incorporate foods that assist in gallbladder health.
8. Milk Thistle for Gallstones
Mike thistle has been long considered a natural way to detoxify your liver and help dissolve gallstones. Originating from the Mediterranean region, it helps relieve pain associated with this disorder as well as bladder pain. Milk thistle can be added in powder form to salads, juice, vegetables and ground meats. You can also consume it as a tea.
To make tea, you will need:
- 1 teaspoon of milk thistle seeds and leaves
- 1 cup of hot water
- 1 reusable tea bag like a muslin bag
- Honey (to taste)
- Crush the milk thistle and put in tea bag. Place in cup of hot water and cover for 5 minutes. After it is done steeping, mix honey to taste.
Non-Surgical Medical Treatments
Dissolution Therapy for Gallstones
Dissolution therapy is a consideration when determining how to dissolve gallstones. A patient is prescribed oral pills made of bile acids. This treatment option is most effective on small stones made of mostly cholesterol. About a third of gallstone patients may consider dissolution therapy. Obese patients have a very low success rate. If you have pigment stones, you may have to seek other treatments.
Sometimes lithotripsy therapy is used in conjunction with dissolution therapy. In the simplest explanation, shock waves are used to break up gallstones into smaller pieces in the hope it will assist the bile acid pills dissolve them. This rare type of treatment is most effective on stones less than 2 centimeters in size.