Living with No Gallbladder UPDATE!

Hey everyone – long time no speak!

To jump straight into things – this year I want to re-vamp/re-visit my blog sites and continue sharing what I feel would be super helpful to people 🙂 I have kept an eye on this blog and seen the kind of things that keep getting re-visited by people and I think there are so many things I can expand on 🙂

 

I want to start with the post I made in 2014 about my lack of gallbladder and give an update on my health/diet and add some new tips!

A quick recap for those who haven’t been here before – I had my gallbladder removed in 2012 after over a year of excruciating pain and tests that eventually all pointed at the pesky thing! I actually started this blog while recovering from the surgery!

I have been very interested in how my diet post-gallbladder removal affected my general health and it has continued evolving ever since removal day. Some of these points will be the same as my first post about this, however it will be nice to see what has changed since then as well:

My food do’s:

– Do always have breakfast – This is the same 🙂 as bile is constantly dripping into my digestive system, not eating for long periods of time makes it uncomfortable (like acid burn), so I always eat breakfast. i usually eat oats – they are the most easily digestible and I have them with banana or stewed apple.

– Do enjoy your fruit and veg – This is the same 🙂 I can eat all fruit and veg, bar one or two things (although when my stomach isn’t feeling great, I avoid raw vegetables). I’m not able to eat things like radishes as it was one of my trigger foods, but I always get my 5-a-day in as nowadays I have found I have transitioned to more of a vegetarian diet (I very occasionally eat fish but also eat a lot of vegan meals). My favourite dinner to have is a big bowl of mixed roasted vegetables!

– Do exercise! – Of course this is the same 🙂 exercise will normally help most people feel better. I have continued running sporadically over the years (I even competed in a Tough Mudder 10 miler in 2017!) but i find even a short walk will help me feel better 🙂

My Food Changes:

– Protein – I do not try and eat as much protein as I used to as I find now that my diet has steered towards predominantly vegetarian/vegan meals I am more interested in nutrients that I can get from plant based sources. I do eat a lot of beans though, so I’m pretty sure I get lots of protein overall!

– Snacking – I do not snack as much as I did previously as I have found I’m more likely to eat intuitively (i.e.: when I feel hungry). As my main meals have balanced out, I find I don’t need to snack as often sometimes. I would recommend doing what feels right and always try and have healthy snacks on hand just in case you get peckish 🙂

My food don’ts:

Unsurprisingly these are all the same! I do have an extra one at the bottom though 😛

– Don’t eat high fat items often – high fat items, for me, include peanut butter, most nuts, full fat dairy (including cream, milk, cheese and yogurt), fast food (especially battered items), fatty meats and high fat carb items (like pastries) and whole eggs. I have some of these very occasionally but if I eat them too often or eat too much of them, my digestive system does not cope so well and it isn’t comfortable.

– Don’t overeat! – no-one should overeat anyway, it’s not good for you, but having no gallbladder to control the flow of bile means that a very large meal can take a very very long time to digest, which equals the very full feeling for a very long time (for me). I do eat large meals sometimes, but I am a lot more conscious of how overeating affects me.

– Don’t worry! – Stress exacerbates a lot of conditions, and it also makes for a unhappy digestive system. By stress I mean worrying about eating the right foods or too much of the not so good foods. Don’t worry! Your main aim should always be to eat lots of fruit and vegetables. I have found all the rest will balance itself out due to being full up on all the good stuff!! Exercise also helps all forms of stress, so get moving!

– Don’t drink too much coffee – I used to be a big coffee drinker – I love the taste, but over time, the acid levels of my stomach just couldn’t cope and I got regular pains in my stomach after drinking coffee. After I stopped drinking coffee for a bit and let my stomach heal, I can now drink coffee again, but I try to have it very infrequently.

 

Again, overall, just be happy! I still have general aches and pains, but nothing like the excruciating pain I was in when I had my silly gallbladder. I can cope with these, I can enjoy my life, and I am happy and healthy!

Have you got any food do’s and don’ts that are specific for yours or your family’s needs? And how do you cope with having no gallbladder? I’d love to hear your stories 🙂

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Bento (No. 88)

Long time no speak!

Not a low lost bento this time but was very fruity:

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Seed roll with cheese and salad, grapes, orange, cherries, sliced mushrooms and a kinder treat.

I love seasonal fruit!

I will be starting to post a little more often and may look to start changing a few things around so watch this space!

Keep bentoing!

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Bento (No. 87)

Super cheap bento time!!
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This bento contains food that cost a total of 68p!! Not quite the 33p I was aiming for but:

– this bento was for the bfs 10 hour shift (he said it was plenty of food for that shift too!);
– it contains a nice healthy split of carbs, fruit, veg and protein (and a treat) so it’s pretty balanced;
– it was super quick!

The bento contains firecracker rice (cost a few pence more than plain rice but was worth the yumminess), steamed brocolli, grapes, jaffa cakes, and peanut butter crackers.

I’m going to try and make a cheaper bento for myself as it’s given me lots more ideas!

Would this bento appeal to you?

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New style of Bento – helping you eat healthy on a budget

Bento lunches/dinners/breakfasts/snacks are amazing in many ways, including:

1. Encouraging children (and some adults) to eat a variety of food;

2. Weight management (in adults);

3. Using up leftovers;

4. Getting your family involved with meal planning and designing.

 

And many more…

 

But, it is a very real thing that food prices are increasing dramatically. Can you still make tasty, healthy and appealing bentos on a tight budget?

 

I would like to investigate.

 
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Over the next few weeks, I am going to try and reduce my food bill (to the extreme if possible) while still maintaining a healthy, balanced, and active lifestyle and meal plan. I plan to share tips and bentos on here, as well as get feedback from your lovely selves!

 

Speak soon!

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Bento (No.86)

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This contains simple sandwiches (with deli Ham and salad in), carrot sticks, cereal bar, unsalted nuts and raisins (in the orange lidded pot), cucumber, satsuma, cheeky jelly worms, and grapes tucked down the side.

Sorry about the lighting on this one! I made it for a night shift (the bfs) and the flash makes it look all superimposed!

How do you deal with lighting issues for blog/web photos?

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Bento (No. 85)

 

 

You know I like a salad. So my bentos are not all pretty, but they are yummy-looking enough for the blog 🙂

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This bento-salad consists of lettuce, onion, pepper, cucumber, carrot and paprika Quorn chicken-style pieces.

I love a bit of Quorn.

What’s your favourite protein to have on a salad?

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Bento (No. 83)

Nice and healthy bento for a warm (almost) summer day.

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This bento contains ham salad sandwiches on seedy bread, quorn chicken style nuggets tucked down the side, a multitude of fresh fruit, unsalted nuts (in the pot) and a cereal bar.

I know this glorious weather is not going to last but pretty please van we have dry weather for june?

I hope everyone is having a lovely week so far!

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Bento (No. 82)

Here’s another one of my ‘boring’ bentos for myself.

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I have half of a veggie sausage sandwich, salmon paste lettuce wraps, cherry tomatoes, hummus and cucumber for dipping.

I always take lots of fruit for snacks and lunch additions so I know it doesn’t look a lot, it was only part of a bigger picture (of my daily food).

Has anyone got any easter choccy left? Some people think I’m strange still having some left!

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Bento (No. 81)

I always prepare myself lunch for work but it’s not normally in usual ‘bento’ form.

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Here is one of my lunches from last week.
It is a big leafy salad with kale, cucumber, carrots, onions, kidney beans and hummus. I drizzled a little bit of olive oil and lemon juice on top as a dressing. I also massage the kale with a little bit of salt and pepper before I pop it in the salad.

What yummy things do you put in your salads?

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Lent (no sugar) recap

Happy Easter!

Benn far too busy for anyones liking but I thought Easter would be a good way to get back into the writing swing.

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Right, lent was interesting. I cannot say I was 100% processed sugar free all the time but it was a big eye opener. I thought numbered points might help with the recap (all of the following points are my own opinon or observation and not medically or scientidically proven in any way):

1. Processed sugar is in everything! – we (as consumers and producers) rely on it far too much and to really cut out all processed sugar I would have had to cook every little bite from scratch!
2. Processed sugar is the cause of a lot of the body issues I have. This may be the case for most people but I cannot generalise – processed sugar makes my skin oily and spotty; my overall skin condition is better without it; my mood is more consistent without it; colds feel easier to handle without it; and I seem to drink more water!
3. Everything tastes really sweet now. Fruit teas are lovely and sweet and I even have to water down my smoothies and fruit juice! Chocolate is lovely but extremely sweet – no choccy overload for me!
4. My mid morning or afternoon cravings have been reduced – either through less sugar or more fresh fruit and veg.

Those are the main points I could think of but overall I will definitely try and reduce my processed sugar intake on a daily basis as I feel so much better for it!

How did your lent go? And I hope you had a fun Easter!

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