PBC Foundation
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Diet advice please

Morning all

I have had PBC for 8 years - well managed with urso, I also have fatty liver. I am overweight and have decided the time to address this is now! So - I have heard with a liver problem you should have carbs in your diet - but I love carbs a bit too much and would rather leave them out - does anyone have any diet advice (other than eat less lol)

7 Replies

Hello gill1111.

I was never informed of changing my diet at all when I was diagnosed with PBC Dec 2010 when I was 46. (I am now 51.) I did ask the consultant and he said to just carry on as normal and that 'the liver loves calories'.

I think there is a lot of conflicting information about regarding what we should and shouldn't have when we have PBC. I think one is pretty much common sense, the alcohol. Though it is said it is ok to have the odd drink of alcohol, for myself I chose not to bother at all from my frist abnormal LFTs in March 2010. (I did have an eggcupful of whisky in a pot of tea during the festive season 2014 as I live in a very cold house thast isn't centrally heated and it was pretty cold one evening. That's the only time in the last 5yrs for me.)

I think by eating sensibly it might make for better and shrug off other things like viruses that might come our way and perhaps keep our system in as good a condition as possible.

Now I have the way of thinking that with a liver disorder, it might be better to cut back on a diet that has a higher fat content given that bile is required to break up fats as it acts like a detergent on them. We do need fat in the diet though for those fat soluble vitamins like A, D and K for eg still as fat is needed for absorption.

I have found since diagnosis I've not actually gained any weight myself but in the last 5yrs I have dropped around 6 pounds I would say. For myself I don't tend to eat anything following the evening meal and I am an itcher so I find that alter evening I am up and down and fidgety as I am during the night (I have got into habit of popping to the loo a few times in the night when I wake up, it temporarily gives me relief from the itch by moving about) so with my through the night movements I think that in my case is one reason I have not gained any weight since diagnosis.

If you look on the British Liver Trust website, they do a leaflet for anyone with a fatty liver. There is a liver disorder known as NAFLD (Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease) and I expect a diet that that recommends might be a help? I'll post the link for you to check out for yourself and read or perhaps ask your doctor for advice or perhaps be referred to a dietician?

I've posted the link for the diet in liver disorders (I prefer not to say I have a disease just like I don't call urso medication but a supplement due to the fact it is a bile component) from the British Liver Trust site. You'll find the leaflet mentioned on the site also.


1 like

Thanks so much! Will check out the link x


I have PBC, under active thyroid, lichen planus and also had a heart attack a few years ago!!!!!! I am also overweightand tried every diet on the market!!! I Joined slimming world 2 weeks ago and to date this is the EASIEST eating plan so far.... You have a mound of free foods to keep you full and yes you can eat carbs....you also have syns if you want.... TRY IT you will be amazed at how much food you can eat!!!! GOOD LUCK.... I lost 5lbs the first week!!

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WOW - sounds good - thanks will have a look


Hi gill1111,

I've tried every diet under the sun and cannot cope any longer with the side effects of crazy diets on my digestive system or my mental abilities or my relationships with family and friends. I want to lose weight but have as much of a normal life as possible, without constipation, bad breath, obsessing about food or snappy, black moods. I also don't like counting calories.

I found a diet I could cope with last year - the 5:2 diet - and lost a stone. I'm about to really start it again now to lose another stone. 5 days a week eat relatively normally (great!) and 2 days (any 2) eat a limited amount. You'd need to research it (there is a book). After I worked out what the calories looked like for the diet days, I didn't calorie count again. It is a diet that is not crazy but allows you to eat healthily, so ticks a lot of boxes.

The only thing to be careful with, is possibly NOT to starve all day on the 2 diet days, so a reasonable evening meal can be enjoyed. So many hours without something to eat may not be helpful for your PBC, so it may be better to have 2 or 3 smaller meals. You also may find you really cannot cope with the low calories on the 2 diet days, bit of trial and error but worth a try? The freedom on the 5 non-diet days allowed me to get my general diet a lot healthier (less cheese, less hidden fats). A diet day was bearable when I knew that I'd have a good breakfast the next day!

Slimming world is also healthy but just didn't suit me or fitting it in around my work and family. Remember to have enough protein which will help stop hunger pangs. I am remembering with horror my 3 months of the cabbage soup diet stinking the house out (many years ago). Madness!


Thanks! All advice greatly received! It's a nightmare - I have under active thyroid as well - which again is controlled with medication - and the menopause is making things a little more tricky! All sent to try us! Good luck to you too!



As with anyone , a good, healthy and balanced diet is recommended to help you with fatigue, and general good health. If you refer too the PBC compendium, you will find a section titled PBC and diet. It gives you examples of foods that will give you a variety in your diet. Eat a little and often, drink lots of water and maintain a healthy balanced diet.

There is a link to the Foundations website at the top of this page.

Best of luck



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