Foods To Eat When You Have Gout
Gout is a metabolic disorder that manifests as a type of extreme inflammatory arthritis. Often beginning with a sharp pain in the big toe, gout occurs when the body cannot properly process uric acid, leading to painful uric crystals accumulating in the joints.
When you have a condition as strongly influenced by diet as gout is, it becomes easy to get caught up in what you cant eat, instead of focusing on the things you can. Purines are an organic compound associated with gout flare-ups because they cause the body to produce higher amounts of uric acid. Foods that contain purines tend to be high-fat or yeasty products. While managing your diet can help control your gout, your food choices should not be centered only around avoiding purines. You should be trying to eat proactively at the same timefinding foods that will help keep your gout in check.
These 15 foods could help fight off gout attacks to live a happier life.
Most Soy Should Be Fine
Soy foods like tofu, soy milk, and edamame have moderate amounts of purines. Traditionally doctors have cautioned against eating too much soy for people with gout. One study found that soybeans, soymilk, and soy powder increased uric acid in the blood significantly. However, larger population studies have recently told a different story. Several have reported that not only are soy products harmless for gout patients, but also people who eat more soy tend to have a reduced gout risk.
The End Of Gout Your Fast Track Approach
Shelly Mannings The End of Gout is not only a fascinating read its also refreshingly practical.
Shelly gives you two simple quick-starts:
Eat more of these
Eat fewer of these
This simple modification can correct years of gout-causing errors inside your eating. And you may start this straight away within minutes of getting this program.That really helped my problem of What Is The Best Meat For Gout Sufferers.
The next step is to follow Shellys 7-day plan.
It tightens up the quick start advice and turns it into a solid, follow-along program.
The 7-day plan was the real clincher for me.
I am a pretty average cook Im competent but not at all skilled or adventurous. Turns out I didnt need to be.
The plan takes away all the thinking and gives me, for the first week, something I can simply copy.
After the first 7 days I used Shellys advice to adapt the plan according to my own tastes.
Which was pretty easy the plan is full of options so you can try different foods and see what you like best.
Its all food you can buy in your supermarket. And it includes lots of nice stuff the chocolate and strawberries desserts were real winners in my house!
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Weight Management And Exercise
The Arthritis Foundation emphasizes how important it is for people with gout to manage their weight.
Obesity is a risk factor for developing gout. If a person with gout has excess weight, losing a few pounds can help them:
- reduce pressure on painful joints
- lower the risk of heart disease
- build strength and flexibility
To achieve this, the person should ask a doctor about a suitable diet to help them manage their weight and an exercise plan.
Anyone who smokes should also ask a doctor to help them with a plan to quit.
The Mediterranean diet contains plants, grains, and healthy fats. It may help people manage their weight while encouraging them to eat healthily.
Best Diet For Gout: What To Eat What To Avoid
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Gout is a type of arthritis, an inflammatory condition of the joints. It affects an estimated 8.3 million people in the US alone (
Fortunately, gout can be controlled with medications, a gout-friendly diet and lifestyle changes.
This article reviews the best diet for gout and what foods to avoid, backed by research.
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Choose A Diet You Can Live With
If you are overweight, losing weight can protect you from gout flare-ups. However, losing weight fast can do more harm than good for gout, as rapid weight loss can raise uric acid levels in your bloodstream. Avoid fad diets and “crash” diets. Consider consulting a dietician, who can help you choose a diet plan that works for you.
Plenty Of Fruit And Vegetables
The recommendation is five portions per day, but try to include as many as possible. Bulking out meals, such as Bolognese, casseroles and stews with vegetables can help to reduce the meat content. Fruit and vegetables contain vitamin C. Although evidence is unclear, high intakes of vitamin C may help to reduce uric acid levels in the blood. Cherries may be particularly useful to include in the diet, as they have also been found to reduce levels of uric acid in the blood.
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What Foods Are Good For Gout
Dietary management of gout focuses on reducing the amount of uric acid in the system and attaining and maintaining a healthy body weight.
Foods that may help keep gout in check are
- Fresh fruits and vegetables such as berries, oranges, bell pepper and pineapple
- Low-fat dairy products, such as yogurt and skimmed milk
- Nuts including nut butters such as almond butter and peanut butter
- Whole grains
- Potatoes, rice, whole-grain bread and pasta
- Oils such as olive oil
- Flax and other seeds
How Does Drinking Alcohol Affect Gout
Alcoholic drinks tend to be high in purines and consuming more than the recommended amount can increase the risk of a gout attack. It is therefore recommended to limit alcohol intake, avoid binge drinking and avoid all alcohol if you have painful gout or are having a gout attack. Try limiting alcohol to a maximum of 14 units per week for both men and women and 1-2 units per day with a minimum of two alcohol-free days a week. Beer, stout, port and fortified wines tend to be higher in purines and should be restricted. Moderate consumption of wine is not associated with a significant increased risk.
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Should I Drink Lots Of Water
Dehydration may be a risk factor for gout although this is not well proven in research. Drinking 1 1.5 litres of fluids a day is recommended for general health benefits. However if you are taking diuretics or have heart or kidney problems, talk to your doctor about the right amount of fluids for you to drink.
Where Can I Get Advice About My Diet
An accredited practising dietitian can provide you with personalised advice to give you the confidence to eat in a way that is best for you. APDs are university-qualified experts in nutrition and dietetics and are committed to the Dietitians Association of Australias Code of Professional Conduct, continuing professional development and providing quality services.
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Which Other Lifestyle Factors Can Affect Gout
While there are no controlled studies or evidence on the effect of lifestyle changes on the incidence of gout, expert opinion is that positive changes in lifestyle can be beneficial to the management of gout. Being overweight is not recommended for gout suffers and the available evidence indicates that losing weight may helpful. Dietary modifications to achieve a healthy body weight are recommended, however the use of crash, high-protein and low-carbohydrate diets should be avoided. Slow and steady weight loss is ideal and support from a dietitian should be sought to help develop a sustainable and balanced weight loss plan. Rapid weight loss is not recommended as it can increase the amount of uric acid in the body leading to an increased chance of a gout attack.
Regular exercise such as swimming or walking is also recommended as it may help reduce the frequency of gout attacks. In addition, it may have a beneficial effect on associated co-morbidities such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension and insulin resistance.
Lifestyle Changes To Avoid Gout:
For this diet to work out and reduce the inflammation caused due to gouts, you need to follow some things very strictly.
- Reduce the daily consumption of meat fish and chicken, ranging from 113 to 170 grams per day.
- Choose plant-based proteins as they are digested quickly.
- A big no-no to alcohol as it disrupts the reduction of uric acid from your bodies as the level of purine in alcoholic beverages in more, which not only stops the process of flushing out uric acid but forms crystals that result in gout.
- It is best to avoid foods that are high in fructose corn syrup as they result in kidney stones.
- Fresh fruit juices are also beneficial as they dont have added preservatives as they are low in fructose and purine and can be had in between meals.
- Altogether avoid pure carbs and choose complex carbohydrates instead.
- Choose low-fat versions of dairy products.
- Drink plenty of water, keeping yourself hydrated by drinking at least 8 to 12 glasses of water.
- Studies show that coffee has a positive effect on gout but without sugar.
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You Can’t Avoid All Purines
There are too many sources of purines to eliminate them all from your diet. You will stay healthier overall if you eat some foods with purines. Remember that vegetable purines have never been shown to promote gout attacks, and that low-fat dairy products are protein sources that lower your risk of gout pain. People with gout can still enjoy meat in moderation, but should limit meat, fish, and poultry to 4 to 6 ounces a day.
Day Gout Friendly Meal Plan
All meat, poultry and fish used in a dish must be no more than 4 ounces per serving in order to get the right balance between their high nutritional value and moderately high purine content.
Cherries should be eaten everyday, as one of your allotted snacks, so you wont forget to take them: studies have shown they are actually able to reduce uric acid. You can eat other fruits outside of your designated snack times.
In some countries the main meal of the day is lunch, whilst in others its dinner. Swap lunches and dinners to suit your culture.
- Lunch: Mixed salad, baked apple.
- Afternoon snack: 1 cup of fresh cherries.
- Dinner: Baked wild salmon with potatoes, broccoli and carrots.
- Late snack: 1 slice of carrot cake.
*Based on suggested menus in Christine Craggs-Hintons excellent book Coping with Gout published by Sheldon Press, London SW1P 4ST.
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What Foods Should You Avoid
If youre susceptible to sudden gout attacks, avoid the main culprits high-purine foods.
These are foods that contain more than 200 mg of purines per 3.5 ounces .
You should also avoid high-fructose foods, as well as moderately-high-purine foods, which contain 150200 mg of purines per 3.5 ounces. These may trigger a gout attack.
Here are a few major high-purine foods, moderately-high-purine foods and high-fructose foods to avoid (
- meats: These include liver, kidneys, sweetbreads and brain
- meats: Examples include pheasant, veal and venison
- Fish: Herring, trout, mackerel, tuna, sardines, anchovies, haddock and more
- seafood: Scallops, crab, shrimp and roe
- Sugary beverages: Especially fruit juices and sugary sodas
- Added sugars: Honey, agave nectar and high-fructose corn syrup
- Yeasts: Nutritional yeast, brewers yeast and other yeast supplements
Additionally, refined carbs like white bread, cakes and cookies should be avoided. Although they are not high in purines or fructose, they are low in nutrients and may raise your uric acid levels (
Summary: If you have gout, you should avoid foods like organ meats, game meats, fish and seafood, sugary beverages, refined carbs, added sugars and yeast.
Reduce Your Protein Intake
Because many sources of protein contain the purines that lead to uric acid, you must limit how much protein you eat. Focus on proteins such as poultry and avoid eating more than three 2.5-ounce servings. Eat legumes as a source of protein as an alternative to meat. Two low-fat dairy servings per day, such as yogurt, can provide a source of protein while also lowering your body’s uric acid levels.
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Foods And Drinks That May Be Good For Gout
Drinking plenty of water and staying hydrated is important if you have gout. Aim to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day. Drinking water can help keep uric acid from building up and help release it from your body. If you have fluid restrictions because of kidney disease, talk to your doctor or dietitian about managing your fluid and gout
Cherries and foods with vitamin C
Some foods like cherries and fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C have been shown to lower the level of uric acid in your blood, which can have a positive effect on gout. Some examples of foods high in vitamin C are:
So There You Have It: 42 Well
You can change things up by substituting other nutritious options, such as:
- Mashed avocado, chopped red onion & tomato, on toasted sourdough, topped with a poached egg.
- Peanut butter and sliced banana on one wholemeal toast slice.
- Turkey breast instead of chicken breast.
- Baked potato with 1 cup max. of sauteed mushrooms .
- Smoked haddock, grilled tomatoes and poached egg / scrambled eggs.
- Roasted red pepper risotto with brown risotto rice, vegetable stock, no wine.
- Baked or grilled hake with salsa verde and steamed vegetables.
- Wholegrain penne pasta with onion, garlic, red and yellow bell peppers, zucchini, dried Italian herbs, and fresh basil.
Remember the meat, poultry and fish in these listings have to be restricted to a 4 oz serving since they generally have a moderately-high purine content.
But what about pork?
Except in certain religious communities, pork is the most widely consumed meat, so is it safe to eat in a gout diet?
It is, but only in moderation. However, there are several important health and moral issues being hotly debated which I cover in another article: Pork and Gout: Safe For Gout Sufferers?
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Should I Avoid All Rich Foods
No. Patients often ask me about desserts, as well as entrees with rich sauces, says Dr. Burg. Its a common myth that these foods cause gout. When eaten in moderation, desserts and other rich foods do not affect gout flare-ups. But moderation is the key word. Rich foods might not cause flare-ups directly, but they can cause weight gain. And obesity is a major risk factor for gout attacks.
At some point, the misconception spread that people with gout should avoid dairy. But in fact, certain dairy products especially milk can help you remove uric acid from your body, Dr. Burg adds.
What Can You Drink If You Have Gout
Foods arenât the only thing that can affect uric acid. What you drink matters, too.
Itâs a good idea to drink lots of fluids — 8 to 16 cups a day. At least half of what you drink should be water. Vitamin C also can help lower uric acid, but studies also show that the high fructose in OJ may boost uric acid levels, so drink it in moderation. Caffeinated coffee can cut uric acid, too, as long as you donât overdo it.
Stay away from sugary drinks like soda and fruit juice. You also may need to limit or avoid alcohol as well. Talk with your doctor to find out whatâs right for you.
While a healthy diet can help control how much uric acid is in your system, you may still need medicine to prevent future attacks. Talk with your doctor about all your treatment options.
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What Foods Should You Eat
Although a gout-friendly diet eliminates many foods, there are still plenty of low-purine foods you can enjoy.
Foods are considered low-purine when they have less than 100 mg of purines per 3.5 ounces .
Here are some low-purine foods that are generally safe for people with gout (20,
- Fruits: All fruits are generally fine for gout. Cherries may even help prevent attacks by lowering uric acid levels and reducing inflammation (
- Vegetables: All vegetables are fine, including potatoes, peas, mushrooms, eggplants and dark green leafy vegetables.
- Legumes: All legumes are fine, including lentils, beans, soybeans and tofu.
- Nuts: All nuts and seeds.
- Whole grains: These include oats, brown rice and barley.
- Dairy products: All dairy is safe, but low-fat dairy appears to be especially beneficial (
- Beverages:Coffee, tea and green tea.
- Herbs and spices: All herbs and spices.
- Plant-based oils: Including canola, coconut, olive and flax oils.
Healthy Recipes For Gout
Finding healthy gout diet menu recipes is fairly simple because most vegetarian and vegan dishes fit easily into a gout diet plan. Try making a soup by pureeing cooked carrots and sweet potatoes, which are both low-purine vegetables, and adding in some curry and ginger to taste. If youre craving meat and want to minimize its effects, opt for chicken seasoned with lemon, thyme, and sage roasted in a pan with chopped potatoes, turnips, and carrots. Other dishes to try include:
- Make a refreshing cucumber salad by combining plain low-fat yogurt with a peeled, quartered, and sliced cucumber, chopped fresh mint, crushed garlic, and a touch of salt.
- Toss cooked noodles with grated Parmesan cheese, garlic, chopped coriander, a touch of olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Quickly cook chunks of onion and bell pepper in some olive oil in a Dutch oven. Add red wine, golden raisins, a touch of brown sugar, salt and pepper, and a dash of red wine vinegar. Cover and let simmer for 45 minutes for a satisfying and healthy vegetable ragout.
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