Crash diets cause gallstones

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Rapid weight loss resulting from crash diets can contribute to formation of gallstones, a research group at Cedar-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles recently discovered.

The severe change in eating habits not only caused people to shed weight drastically, but raised triglyceride levels and increased the amount of calcium in the bile. Together, these chemical changes create a high risk for gallstone formation.

Gloria Petersen, Ph.D., one of the researchers, found that in more than 12% of the subjects observed on a rapid weight loss program, gallstones developed.

Another chemical change that may be taking place during the rapid weight loss program is a sudden increase in mucous secretion in the gallbladder, Mitchell Shiffman, M.D., another researcher, noted. This action, he is convinced, attracts more calcium into the gallbladder.

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