The Liver Shrinking Diet Food List: What You Need to Know

The Liver Shrinking Diet Food List: What You Need to Know

The liver shrinking diet, also known as the pre-bariatric surgery diet, is a low-calorie, low-carbohydrate, and high-protein diet designed to shrink the liver and reduce the risk of complications during bariatric surgery. This diet is essential for patients who are obese or overweight and are planning to undergo bariatric surgery. In this article, we will provide you with a detailed liver shrinking diet food list.

What is the Liver Shrinking Diet?

The liver shrinking diet is a strict diet that patients must follow for two weeks before bariatric surgery. The goal of this diet is to reduce the size of the liver by burning glycogen, a stored form of glucose in the liver, and water. By shrinking the liver, surgeons can access the stomach more easily and perform surgery with reduced risk of complications.

Liver Shrinking Diet Food List

The following is a list of approved foods for the liver shrinking diet:

Lean Proteins

Lean proteins are a critical component of the liver shrinking diet. Proteins are essential for maintaining muscle mass, promoting satiety, and keeping you full for longer. Examples of lean proteins include:

  • Skinless chicken breast
  • Turkey breast
  • Fish and shellfish
  • Lean cuts of beef and pork
  • Eggs (hard-boiled, soft-boiled, scrambled, poached, etc.)


Vegetables are a great source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. They are also low in calories and carbohydrates, making them an excellent addition to the liver shrinking diet. Some examples of vegetables that are approved for the liver shrinking diet include:
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Zucchini
  • Green beans
  • Carrots


Fruits are generally higher in carbohydrates than vegetables, so they should be consumed in limited amounts on the liver shrinking diet. Some fruits that are approved for the liver shrinking diet include:
  • Berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, etc.)
  • Apples
  • Oranges
  • Grapefruit
  • Melons (watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew)


Dairy products are a good source of protein and calcium, but they can also be high in fat. Patients on the liver shrinking diet should opt for low-fat or fat-free dairy products. Some examples of approved dairy products include:

Skim or low-fat milk

Low-fat Greek yogurt
Low-fat cheese
Skim or low-fat cottage cheese


Water is the preferred beverage for the liver shrinking diet, but patients can also consume other beverages such as fruit-infused water, Crystal Light, Mio, Fruit2O, and Propel Zero. Caffeine and carbonated beverages are generally not allowed on the liver shrinking diet.

Foods to Avoid on the Liver Shrinking Diet

The following foods should be avoided on the liver shrinking diet:
  • Fried foods
  • Breaded foods
  • High-fat meats (bacon, sausage, etc.)
  • High-fat dairy products (whole milk, full-fat cheese, etc.)
  • Processed foods (chips, crackers, cookies, etc.)
  • Sugary drinks (soda, juice, etc.)
  • Alcohol

Liver Reduction Diet Food List

The liver shrinking diet is an important part of bariatric surgery preparation and requires strict adherence to a specific set of foods. The food list provided in this article includes lean protein, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and low-calorie beverages while avoiding fried foods, high-fat foods, high-carbohydrate foods, sugary foods, and carbonated beverages. Following the liver shrinking diet can help reduce the size of the liver and improve the chances of a successful surgery and long-term weight loss.