For gallbladder health, try a Mediterranean diet

Eating foods high in fibre, such as those found in a Mediterranean diet, was tied to a lower incidence of needing gallbladder surgery, a French study says.

Compared with people who didn't follow a Mediterranean diet - which emphasies eating plant-based foods like fruit, vegetables, grains, legumes and nuts - those who adhered to it most closely had a much lower likelihood of needing a cholecystectomy - an operation to remove the gallbladder, say the authors.

"We (also) found that a higher intake of ham was associated with higher risk of cholecystectomy," wrote the authors in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

While the observational study cannot prove that a Mediterranean diet was the reason for the lower risk of gallbladder surgery, a Mediterranean diet has consistently been shown to be associated with living longer, said Dr James Lewis, a gastroenterologist at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, who was not part of the study. - REUTERS