Weight Gain After Gallbladder Removal? These 5 Reasons Might be Why

Aug 30, 2023

Gallbladder removal is a time when you expect pain and discomfort to go away, but what you do not expect is to notice weight gain! It is one of the most commonly performed surgeries, and robotic gallbladder surgery has made the process all the more convenient, reducing recovery and healing time due to its non-invasive nature. So, do you gain weight after gallbladder removal? Learn 5 reasons for weight gain after gallbladder removal in this blog!

Does Gallbladder Removal Cause Weight Gain?

For many people, weight loss after gallbladder removal could prove to be a challenging struggle all year round. Yes, the gallbladder can cause weight gain, but there are many reasons it could happen. Metabolic changes, diet, insulin resistance, and other causes could be behind the additional weight. While some factors are related to the surgical procedure, others may not be directly related to the process.

Reasons for Weight Gain After Gallbladder Removal

Here are some reasons why gallbladder removal might cause weight gain:

  1. Metabolic Changes
    Removing the gallbladder is not as incompatible as it would be to take the other organs out. But it is still an organ, and its absence will have an impact on your body. The changes after the operation could affect the metabolic and digestive processes, which could result in weight gain after gallbladder removal.
  2. Problems with Fat Digestion & Metabolism
    If your gallbladder is not working properly, there will be a significant effect on the quality of bile produced and circulated. The bile might transform into sludge or turn too thick, which leads to stagnation. With time, gallstones form, and the emptying of the gallbladder is impaired. Due to this, the fats and fat-soluble vitamins needed by the body are not absorbed by the body. Thus, the body resolves to deal with less fat and goes into starvation mode. This means that the body will preserve and hold on to the fat that is already present.
    Even if you have gone under gallbladder removal surgery, bile is slowly secreted into the small liver. The resulting bile is then insufficient or too diluted to function, which causes faulty digestion and metabolism of fat. As a result, this might be a reason for weight gain after gallbladder removal.
  3. Diet
    Eating more than your body requires will cause weight gain, with or without gallbladder issues. The reason you had weight gain after surgery could be that you made an effort to lose weight before the procedure and didn’t maintain the weight later. Sometimes, the patients are unable to cut back on unhealthy foods, which causes an increase in weight. Or, perhaps the person was already overweight. Any of these factors could be the reason for weight gain after gallbladder removal.
  4. Inflammation
    Inflammation may not result directly due to gallbladder removal, it is a common factor behind increased weight in people who have undergone gallbladder removal. The weight control hormone, called leptin, is affected by inflammation, making it less efficient. The hypothalamus increases appetite and slows down metabolism due to this. In addition, sugar cravings, inflammatory cytokines, irregular appetite, and more also cause weight gain due to inflammation.
  5. Insulin Resistance
    Though it is related to inflammation, insulin resistance brings about multiple complications, which is why it is listed as a separate reason. It may not be directly a result of gallbladder removal; insulin resistance is one of the reasons why gallstones form, and it can develop within the high-risk group, like gallbladder diseases. Insulin resistance is also a precursor for type 2 diabetes, which is associated with weight gain and fatigue. So, it could be the reason behind weight gain after gallbladder removal.

Final Word

Some reasons for weight gain after gallbladder removal include insulin resistance, diet, inflammation, metabolic changes, and more. Talk to an expert to deal with your symptoms in the right manner.

Nova Bariatrics can help improve your condition. Dial (469) 639-0953 to talk to us and give us a visit at 1081 Kinwest Pkwy #110, Irving, TX 75063.

Dr. Mustafa H. Alibhai

Dr. Alibhai, a board-certified general surgeon, passionately leads Nova Bariatrics and General Surgery. Formerly an Assistant Professor at McGovern Medical School, he’s a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgeons. His academic journey includes a Bachelor’s from Southern Methodist University, Medical School at UT Southwestern, and residencies at UT Southwestern. Specializing further, he completed Bariatric and Robotic Fellowships, advancing surgical techniques with a focus on patient well-being.



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