While maintaining a healthy liver is key for eliminating toxins, processing cholesterol, hormones and metabolism of glucose, proteins, fats, the wellbeing of another organ is equally essential for these processes. This is the gall bladder, a small pear-shaped pouch-like structure situated below the liver, to the right side of the abdomen, which stores and concentrates bile, a yellowish-brown digestive enzyme synthesized by the liver, to facilitate smooth digestion. And one of the major common ailments plaguing this structure is gallstones, medically termed as cholelithiasis. Gallstones are solidified lumps of bile fluid that form in the gall bladder, the chief cause of which is very high levels of cholesterol in bile. It also happens due to excess bilirubin in bile like in the case of hepatic cirrhosis, or when the gall bladder malfunctions and does not drain out bile into the intestines. The presence of gallstones blocks the bile ducts through which bile fluids are transported from the liver into the gall bladder and this, in turn, prompts an inflammatory reaction in the liver.

Also Read: Gallstones: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

Ayurveda defines gallstones as “Pittashmari”, wherein “Ashmari” means stones and “Pitta” denotes the imbalanced Pitta dosha of bile in the gall bladder. This occurs from surplus Kapha dosha mixing with the Pitta features of the viscous fluid bile, turning it into a dry, hardened form. This invariably triggers symptoms including “Alasya” i.e. lethargy, “Gaurav” or heaviness in the abdomen and a decline in “Agni”, which is the digestive fire. The ancient manuscripts of Charaka Samhita, Ashtanga Hridaya, Sushruta Samhita not only elucidate the pathology of gallstones but also offer innumerable remedies from nature to balance the doshas and resolve the instance of cholelithiasis. These primarily comprise two types of potent herbs referred to as cholagogues and choleretics. Cholagogues are plant-based substances that possess the capability to activate the gall bladder, so as to make it contract and empty excess bile into the intestines. Plant derivatives that stimulate the liver to secrete more bile and avert the accumulation of cholesterol in the fluids are called choleretics. Thanks to the tomes of information in the time-tested practice of Ayurveda, myriad cholagogue and choleretic herbs are available to heal gallstones.

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ayurvedic herbs to treat gallstones

Marvellous Herbal Remedies To Effectively Mend Gallstones:

1. Turmeric

Commonly called Haldi or Halada in Sanskrit, turmeric is famed for its excellent choleretic as well as anti-inflammatory properties, owing to curcumin compounds. Having some warm milk infused with turmeric after meals at night assists in liquifying bile fluids, ridding gallstones from bile ducts and significantly improves digestion, liver health.

2. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a panacea for a host of illnesses, including liver and gall bladder issues. Termed as Kumari in Sanskrit, it is a powerful cholagogue that cleanses the gall bladder of stones. Extracting the gel from aloe leaves, adding some honey and consuming this aloe vera juice regularly is a proven natural remedy for gallstones.

Also Read: Aloe Vera: Medicinal Uses, Benefits For Skin And Hair, Supplements And Recipes

3. Gokshura

The dried fruits of Tribulus terrestris or Gokshura consist of several bioactive elements such as alkaloids, phytosterols that work wonders in healing gallstones, liver and kidney problems, besides urinary tract disorders. This potent herb can be ingested as Gokshura churna or simply in the powdered form, to efficiently detoxify the gall bladder.

4. Kalonji

Scientifically termed as Nigella sativa, kalonji is an age-old herbal antidote for gallstones, being packed with the antioxidant thymoquinone, which is an anti-inflammatory and lithotropic agent. Mixing kalonji seeds with honey, kalonji or black seed oil and warm water and drinking this tonic on an empty stomach aids in dissolving gallstones.

5. Black Pepper

Black Pepper or Kali Mirch, known as Maricha in Sanskrit, is laden with medicinal qualities such as choleretic components that regulate bile secretions and enhance the functioning of the liver, gall bladder. Consuming some black pepper powder with warm water before meals promotes digestion, balances cholesterol and dispels gallstones.