Curcumin: People with SOD or Gallstones Should NOT Take Curcumin

By | December 19, 2013
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curcumin, turmeric, gallstones and sod

Important information about curcumin (turmeric) in relation to gallstones and SOD.

Once you read this post feel free to throw darts at me if you have Sphincter of Oddi dysfunction or gallstones and have taken a turmeric product on my recommendation. However …

IF you have seen good results please hold the darts but consider being cautious 🙂

I was answering some questions for a lady on my facebook page who has SOD and I remembered something that I should have told people about the potential hazards of using the product if you have certain conditions so …

This really proves that I too can be an idiot at times and that I make mistakes. So here it is:

IF you have Sphincter of Oddi dysfunction you should NOT take curcumin or use turmeric in cooking because curcumin induces bile flow and in SOD patients this could prove to be a not so good experience.

I am NOT saying that taking curcumin will cause AP in SOD patients but it may contribute.

Since curcumin increases bile flow and since the Sphincter of Oddi may be narrowed from scar tissue the increased flow of bile could back up and if it backs up into the pancreatic duct it may cause AP.

What Is Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction?

This short video will quickly explain SOD.

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What About Curcumin and Gallstones?

People who have gallstones should probably avoid turmeric and curcumin as well simply because increased bile flow could cause a stone or stones to pass and if they block the duct then AP could be what results. In fact gallstones are the most common cause of acute pancreatitis.

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The good news is this …

Like I have mentioned before I used grape seed extract and vitamin C first before I found out about curcumin. Grape seed extract and vita C worked a miracle. Of course it may have been helped along with some divine intervention as well (praise God because I am sure He taught me all the stuff I know and kept me safe too. My outcome could have been so much worse!).

I found curcumin later and added it. So …

Curcumin may not be necessary. I found healing without it. Yet, it definitely is a good addition because it’s natural natural pain relieving ability rivals NSAIDs. Plus …

Turmeric (root that curcuminoids come from) seems to induce gallbladder contractions that keeps the bile flowing. This cleansing action helps to reduce the formation of cholesterol type gallstones by keeping the bile contained within the gallbladder flushed and fresh[1]. So for those who do not have SOD or gallstones you may find it extremely beneficial.

Again, IF you have Sphincter of Oddi dysfunction or gallstones you may want to refrain from using turmeric or curcumin for pain relief. Choose grape seed extract and vitamin C instead.


  1. Therapeutic Roles of Curcumin: Lessons Learned from Clinical Trials
    Subash C. Gupta, Sridevi Patchva, and Bharat B. Aggarwal

8 thoughts on “Curcumin: People with SOD or Gallstones Should NOT Take Curcumin

  1. Antoinette

    Love your site. I just got diagnosed with Acute Pancreatitis at the ER this weekend. They said my amylase, lipase and WBC labs were within normal range, so they sent me home. I just bought grape seed and curcumin, can I take it if I don’t have a gallbladder anymore?

    1. The Health Guy Post author

      Antoinette – sorry to hear you aren’t well. Hopefully you will heal up. To answer your question about grape seed and curcumin: “can I take it if I don’t have a gallbladder anymore?” Yes on grape seed and maybe on curcumin. Your gallballder has nothing to do with your grape seed consumtion and since you no longer have a gallbladder or stones curcumin shouldn’t be an issue unless you have SOD (Sphincter of Oddi dysfunction). IF you have SOD, especially with scar tissue that blocks the flow of bile it could still be an issue. IF you have SOD I’d suggest not taking curcumin.

  2. Jennifer

    Hi, I have bile duct stricture on both ducts, nothing on the galbladder except a polyp. Can I take tumeric? I have already started on grape seed and vitamin C.

    Thank you

    1. The Health Guy Post author

      Hi Jennifer, do you have some turmeric in your spice rack? If so try some on food. If it seems to work out ok (no symptoms) after eating it several times you may be ok with it. I wouldn’t buy curcumin yet, try turmeric in your food first. I put it on all sorts of things. It and garlic together really puts some zip in otherwise bland foods. IF it causes symptoms don’t use it.

  3. Jilly

    Thank you for your info on Curcumin! I’m very bummed because of all the wonderful benefits of curcumin BUT I have SOD and now for the 3rd time taking curcumin this AM, I’ve had another flare up of my SOD! Finally figured out it was the curcumin ( the only thing I had this AM before the attack) I’ll do the grape seed and vit C but if you know of anything that has all the other benefits on dementia as curcumin I’d love to know! Good luck to SOD and Pancreatitis sufferers out there! 🙁

      1. D Dwelley

        What about her question: “Is there something besides curcumin that helps the same way with dementia/memory?” And feeling of wellbeing?

        1. The Health Guy Post author

          Hi D Dwelley – I have no clue. There are many things that are toted to help but once brain cells are destroyed they do not regenerate to my knowledge. Best of luck.


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