Why the Gallbladder is critical to your physical and emotional health! Prevent painful gallstones in 7 easy steps!
In Chinese Medicine and acupuncture, the meridian is a set of energetic pathways in the body along which vital energy, called ‘ki’ or ‘chi’, flows. There are twelve such pathways associated with specific organs, and each meridian is governed by a specific organ.
Western culture is quick to focus on heart, lung, and brain health but when do we ever hear much about the gallbladder, except when it goes wrong?
As well, Western Medicine is all too eager to remove it at the slightest sign of trouble!
According to WebMD, after Laparoscopic gallbladder surgery (cholecystectomy) (which removes the gallbladder and gallstones) bile flows from the liver (where it is made) through the common bile duct and into the small intestine.
Conventional medical ‘wisdom’ says this has little or no side effects on the body, but there is much more to the gallbladder than western culture presently cares to acknowledge.
- Firstly, this organ works closely with your lymphatic system to clear out toxic by-products of the metabolism. Without it, we would be filled up with all kinds of toxins, leading to toxin overload!
- Its energy provides us with muscular strength and vitality. In other words, the gallbladder essentially eliminates muscular fatigue and aches.
- It also directly affects both the quality and length of sleep.
- Holistic wisdom understands that all organs of the body are responsible for not only their anatomic functions but for emotional issues as well – and the gallbladder plays a large role in having courage and taking initiative. Remember the old English phrase, ‘you’ve got a lot of gall’?
People didn’t just say it because it had a ring to it. People with a weak gallbladder are indecisive, timid, and easily discouraged.
The gallbladder is located near the liver, but that doesn’t mean it is only limited to affecting that region of the body. In Chinese medicine, the gall bladder meridian runs up over the shoulders and back of the neck, around to the top of the head and forehead, and so the common tension headache is attributed to blockages within the gall bladder meridian.
By accessing the gallbladder meridian at the proper acupoint, these blockages can be totally alleviated. Clearing the ‘energy body’ also works. With this comes longer and more restful sleep, no tension headaches, or dizziness.
With all this in mind, here are 7 ways to love your gallbladder – and prevent its unnecessary removal down the road!
- Drink a cup of warm lemon water every morning Lemon helps to ease the many duties of the gallbladder. The juice from a lemon will increase urination, which releases toxins faster. It also encourages the gallbladder to produce bile, one of the key acids used in digestion. Additionally, lemons are chock full of vitamin C, which decreases stress and boosts immunity. Why warm, you ask? Warm liquids are absorbed by the body much faster, because less energy is spent trying to convert it to an absorbable temperature.
- Use raw coconut oil This oil is phenomenal if you are experiencing blockages in the gallbladder or liver because it does not need to be digested or emulsified by either organ. Your gallbladder cannot process large amounts of fat on regular basis, otherwise you risk health complications including gallstones. Unrefined coconut oil is very easy on the gallbladder because it contains mostly short and medium chained fatty acids, which do not require pancreatic enzymes or bile salts to digest. You can use it as a substitute for cooking oil, or even add a spoonful into a hot drink like tea or coffee.
- Eat more sulfur-rich foods Like garlic, onions, and any of the cruciferous veggies (think kale, broccoli, and cauliflower). They will provide you with nutrient necessary in the digestive process.
- Do more yoga The use of meditation, breathing techniques, and certain poses in daily yoga have been found to enhance gallbladder function. The most effective poses to help the gallbladder are sarvangasana (shoulder stand pose), shalabhasana (locust pose), dhanarasana (bow pose), bhujangasana (cobra pose), and paschimotasana (back stretching posture).
- Take a Gallbladder flush Combine ½ cup of organic olive oil with 1 cup of either lemon or grapefruit juice and consume right before bed. Take this in the springtime, because flushes and cleanses are better in the spring when energy is starting to come up.
- Avoid greasy foods! These foods will clog the gallbladder, subjecting it to additional strain because they are high in fat. Avoiding greasy, processed fats will also alleviate stomach problems that you may be having if you are experiencing gallbladder obstruction.
- Find a spiritual practice that helps you heal emotionally Often the gallbladder is put under strain from anger, frustration, and resentment. Create the time to go for a long hike in nature, relax in the warmth of the sun, swim in the sea… rebuild your positive energy supply.