90 in 9 Update: Sometimes when we set out on a course, we are suddenly required to  change direction. This is what has happened to me over the past couple of weeks. I've had to modify my approach to the  paleo diet to one that is  gallbladder friendly. My ND (Naturopathic Doctor) actually wanted  me to eat a vegan diet to give my gallbladder a rest. Vegan I cannot do, but pescatarian paleo is fine. I’m to have lots of raw cleansing foods (greens and other veggies) and no alcohol (so sad) or fat. The latter command is quite difficult to obey, I realize. So I’ve minimized my fat intake, which is always accompanied by a barrage of digestive aids (enzymes, especially lipase, betaine HCL, ox bile, …) and a number of other supplements taken throughout the day. Why the drastic modification, you may wonder? Well, I was enjoying my Eat Fat Get Thin diet and loving it—a bit too much, it appears—when I had a severe gallbladder attack. I ended up in the ER on morphine and continued to have lingering pain for seven days afterwards. I was completely dehydrated and weak for another several days and am still recovering. Aah, the monkey wrenches that are thrown in our plans!

My Gallbladder Protocol

  • Vegetable broth, water
  •  No meats, dairy, nuts, eggs, or avocado
  •  Vegan diet (we agreed on pescatarian for me, so I get to add some fish) 
  •  No fats


  •  Anti-inflammatory support – Meriva 500 (this is turmeric aka curcumin combined with phosphatidyl choline)
  • Homeopathic  remedies – Chelidonium, and Cholecynthesis
  •  With food – Betaine HCL, ox bile, digestive enzymes containing lipase
  •  Stone dissolving – Lecithin (granules or capsules) 1g 3 times a day; Mentharil (a combination of peppermint, rosemary, and thyme oils to soothe the intestines) 2 caps three times a day; D-Limonene (orange peel oil) 1 cap three times a day after a meal.

Pain Support:

  •  Topical cold vinegar pack over painful area
  •  Topical castor oil pack

Two thoughts: 

(1)    This gallbladder protocol is doable in the Caribbean. The betaine HCL, ox bile, and digestive enzymes with lipase should be available as supplements. The stone dissolving part of the protocol can be taken in the form of teas. I remember my mother keeping a stock of dried orange peel in the freezer for stomach upsets. We loved drinking it with a little bit of honey. Powdered saffron root can be used in place of the Meriva along with lecithin (phosphatidyl choline is an ingredient found in lecithin, in concentrated form). Of course, the dosing of the substitutes would not be the same, but they would still have an effect. There should also be Caribbean equivalents for the homeopathic remedies, although I don’t know what they are.

(2)    Food prep and recipes will be much simpler, a salad or some cooked veggies with fish on top.

So what does a day’s diet look like?

I start off with green juice (I juice greens with apples, lemon and ginger—watermelon is a good substitute for apples)

Mid morning, I may have a shake with watered down coconut milk, lecithin and fruit, or sardines with tomatoes and onions, or saltfish buljol (without the boiled eggs or avocado, sigh!).

Lunch is a large salad with fish on top--smoked salmon, canned salmon, tuna, anchovies, etc.

Dinner is grilled fish with a cooked vegetable or a salad. If I’m having a big dinner, I’ll skip the fish with lunch.

I may have a fruit for dessert or later in the night.

I drink lots of water (flavored with lemon, cucumber, etc.) throughout the day and herbal teas. Orange peel tea is actually quite delicious with a little honey and spice.  

Gallbladder issues or not, the 90 in 9 program is on! I’ve lost 4 lbs in two weeks and am slowly getting back on the exercise track, which I had abandoned owing to my gallbladder issues. Time to put all the exercise equipment hanging around the house to good use. Recumbent bike…check; ab machines…check; exercise CDs…check; treadmill…not yet, walking outdoors is so much better. And, when I’m back in the Caribbean, swimming at the beach. Great stuff to look forward to.

The goal of the 90 in 9 plan is to lose 10 lbs per month for the next 9 months, which breaks down to 2.5 lbs per week. This is an achievable goal and one that does not place too much stress on the gallbladder, which tends to form stones with rapid weight loss and we definitely can’t have that!



07/04/2016 6:37am

The month of march is running around and I love to go our and visit some most beautiful places in the Caribbean because in this way I can make my life enjoyable. I am very lucky that the people able to know me.

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08/25/2016 2:28am

Sharing this kind of experience, made people, also me, to be informed of the right nutrition and what kind of nutrients can help when having that kind of illness (the inflammation of gallbladder). Like me, I enjoy eating food with lots of carbohydrates and it's not a great balance diet at all. I'll try to adopt this kind of diet protocol, since symptoms are starting to engage in my body.

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01/07/2017 9:47am

This diet looks good although definitely not tasty. A bit better though that you've decided about adding those seafood items there as the proteins would keep you focused longer.

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    Charmaine Robinson is a translator and Certified Health Coach with 10+ years of exploration  in the field of nutrition. Through her blog, she brings  Caribbean style to paleo living .  

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    March 2016