Shopping List For Gout
What to put in your cart and what to pass up when planning your gout diet.
A diet to lower uric acid levels, along with medications prescribed by your doctor, makes gout one of the most controllable forms of arthritis. While you should always discuss the merits and drawbacks of specific foods with your doctor, use this shopping checklist as a general guide to food choices to improve your overall health, lower uric acid levels and reduce your risk of painful gout attacks. Put in Your Cart
- Skim milk.
- Low-fat dairy products .
- Whole-grain products .
- Plant oils .
- Vitamin C supplements .
- Coffee .
- Water bottles .
- Red meat and organ meats .
- Shellfish such as shrimp and lobster.
- Refined carbohydrates .
- Processed foods .
- Sugary beverages.
- Alcohol .
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Do I Need To Stop Drinking Alcohol With Gout
Yes, its a good idea to cut out alcohol. Alcohol molecules in your body tend to increase uric acid levels, so drinking can push you over the edge and into a flare-up. If youre newly diagnosed and start taking medication, try cutting out alcohol at first. Your doctor may allow you to add a small amount back into your diet over time as your uric acid levels come down. But even then, its best to avoid beer and liquor and stick to safer choices such as red wine, Dr. Burg says.
All myths aside, the best advice for people with gout is to eat fresh, unprocessed foods. Choose complex carbohydrates over refined carbs from packaged or processed foods. And always drink plenty of water because dehydration is a risk factor for an acute attack.
Chicken Or Eggplant Parmigiana
Making chicken parmigiana is similar to recipe #2 above, if you are baking the chicken breasts. Same benefits chicken or eggplant less of a gout threat than red meat. This will take a little more prep time to set up the three breading stations. Yet, it is still a straight-forward and worth-while dish with no cutting of vegetables.
Bread crumbs and sauce can be whatever flavor you want to use. If you have been getting frequent gout flares or just getting over one, avoid the breadcrumbs that contain yeast extract. Note that yeast extract is a derivative of MSG, a gout starter.
You can replace the chicken with eggplants, or even vegetarian meatballs from the store. Make enough and youll have plenty of leftovers and guarantees you have another gout-friendly meal.
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Some Meat Fish Eggs Beans And Pulses
Eat these foods in moderation. Having vitamin C with meals can help to improve the absorption of iron, so drink a small glass of orange juice, have a piece of fruit for dessert, or serve up meals with plenty of vegetables. Keep your portions of meat controlled by using your hands as a serving size guide. A serving is about the size and thickness of the palm of your hand.
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.
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Exercise And General Health
In addition to following the gout diet, your healthcare provider may recommend that you make other changes to help you live comfortably with gout. The recommendations may include physical activity.
Studies have shown that regular exercise can help to improve joint function and help you to maintain a healthy weight. However, strenuous exercise can do more harm than good and dehydration may raise the level of uric acid in serum and trigger gout.
What Can You Not Eat With Gout
Foods rich in purines must be avoided if you have gout. Purines are a type of chemical that produce uric acid in the body. They are naturally found in the body and can also be found in certain foods. The main modification in the diet traditionally involves eating a low-purine diet. Although avoiding purines completely is not possible, you should strive to limit them.
Both moderate and high-purine foods and drinks must be avoided if you have gout. These include
- Alcohol is a major trigger for gout attacks. This is because when you drink alcohol your kidneys filter it out instead of uric acid. This leads to the build-up of uric acid in the body. All alcoholic beverages are bad for gout. Beer is especially bad for gout since it is rich in purines.
- Certain fish, seafood and shellfish, including anchovies, trout, sardines, herring, codfish, mussels, codfish, scallops and haddock
- Organ meats such as liver, kidney, sweetbreads and brain. People with gout, however, can have a moderate intake of lean meats such as chicken and turkey.
- Red meat including bacon, turkey, veal and venison
- Dried beans and peas
- Food products containing a high amount of fructose such as soda and some juices, cereal, ice cream, candy and junk food
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Foods You Can Eat In Moderation
Aside from organ meats, game meats and certain fish, most meats can be consumed in moderation. You should limit yourself to 46 ounces of these a few times per week .
They contain a moderate amount of purines, which is considered to be 100200 mg per 100 grams. Thus, eating too much of them may trigger a gout attack.
- Meats: These include chicken, beef, pork and lamb.
- Other fish: Fresh or canned salmon generally contains lower levels of purines than most other fish.
Summary: Foods you should eat with gout include all fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, eggs and most beverages. Limit your consumption of non-organ meats and fish like salmon to servings of 46 ounces a few times weekly.
Gout Diet: Dos And Donts
Maintaining a balanced diet, low in uric acid, is critical for lowering the risk of a gout attack. Learn which foods and beverages you should eat and which ones to avoid.
1. What You Eat and Drink Matters
2. DO: Drink Water
3. DONT: Drink Beer
4. DO: Drink Milk
5. DONT: Drink Liquor
6. DO: Drink Coffee
7. DONT: Drink Soda
8. Do: Eat Citrus
9. DONT: Eat Organ Meats
10. DO: Eat Vegetable Proteins
11. DONT: Eat Certain Seafood
12. DO: Eat Cherries
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Be Choosy About Carbs
Carbs can be helpful or harmful to your gout health. The most helpful carbs are found in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes. Sweet potatoes, beans, apples, and popcorn can all be served in wholesome and delicious ways as part of a healthy gout diet.
Other carbs come as natural and refined sugars. Candy, sports drinks, some breakfast cereal, and some pasta sauces all contribute to dietary sugar from unhealthy carbs.
What Does Real Food Look Like
There are countless books and websites out there about what to eat and what not to eat in general. Were not going to go down that rabbit hole on this one. Think: Caveman
What did cavemen do? Did they grow fields full of corn and wheat to bake crackers and chips? No. Did they have a herd of cows and goats to milk? No. They wouldnt wait that long they would have clubbed them and started chewing.
Cavemen didnt need any kind of gout diet recipes. They ate a pretty clean diet mostly plants, mostly raw, and some meat . . . raw.
Understand this with my gout diet recipes, I dont want you to eat everything completely raw, BUTfood substances go through major changes with heat and lose a lot of nutritive value due to cookingjust an FYI.
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Tip #: Limit Meat Intake
While adopting a vegetarian diet may not be feasible for everyone, eating a diet rich in vegetables, grains and less meat can be very beneficial, especially for those who experience severe gout attacks. However, avoid vegetables like asparagus, cauliflower, spinach and mushrooms, because they are higher in purine than other types.
White meat, like chicken, is generally better to eat than red meats and turkey. But, any kind of meat should be consumed in moderation. Dr. Hiltz warns.
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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How Is Gout Affected By Diet
Gout is a type of arthritis that is associated with elevated levels of uric acid in the blood. High levels of uric acid can cause crystals to form in the joints, causing pain and swelling. Uric acid is a normal waste product formed from the breakdown of food, particularly compounds called purines. It is believed that lowering uric acid levels through small changes in your diet may help reduce the chance of future gout attacks.
A healthy, balanced diet may help reduce the risk of gout attacks.
Do Certain Foods Cause Gout
There are many misconceptions about diet and gout. For example it is commonly thought that foods such as citrus foods cause gout. There is no evidence that this is true. However several studies have shown that people with gout are more likely to eat certain foods. These foods tend to contain high levels of purines, a substance that can be made into uric acid in the body. Purine-rich foods include:
- meat particularly red meat and offal, such as liver, kidneys and heart
- seafood particularly shellfish, scallops, mussels, herring, mackerel, sardines and anchovies
- foods containing yeast such as Vegemite and beer.
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Does Fructose Cause Gout
Fructose is a sugar that is found in fruits and vegetables. It is also found in high levels in foods sweetened with corn syrup, such as bread, cereal, soft drinks and fruit juices. An American study found that men who drank five to six servings of fructose-sweetened soft drinks per week were more likely to have gout. However there is no research showing that fructose actually causes gout. Cutting down the amount of food artificially sweetened with high fructose corn syrup may be beneficial for your overall health. However naturally occurring fructose in fruit and vegetables also provides general health benefits and should not be completely avoided without advice from your doctor or dietitian.
Are Cashews Bad For Gout
The next thing I want to add is that cashews do not increase uric acid levels. You can eat them almost on a daily basis and you wont get any troubles regarding your gout. The situation is the same with all nuts.
They can also help you feel full for a long period of time and therefore help you lose weight or eat less. This is important for gout sufferers because they really have to manage the weight.
Gout and cashews can simply coexist. If you are wondering can you eat them and how much or you are afraid that they can cause a gout flare, now you know the truth.
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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.
Should I Cut Out Purine
There is very little scientific proof that avoiding the purine-rich foods listed above can successfully reduce gout attacks. You may miss out on important nutrients and vitamins by completely cutting these foods from your diet.
If you notice certain foods trigger your gout attacks, you may benefit from cutting down the amounts of those foods in your diet. However not all purine-rich foods are thought to cause gout. For example, a number of vegetables are also rich in purines but appear less likely to cause gout than diets containing meat and shellfish.
Dairy foods, which can contain purines, actually appear to lower the risk of gout. For most people with gout, a healthy balanced diet is all that is needed, alongside medicines to reduce uric acid levels. Most people taking medicines to reduce uric acid levels find they can still eat purine-rich foods without attacks of gout by being careful with the quantity they eat.
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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.
Foods To Eat For People With Gout
An outlier to the rule is purine-rich vegetables like spinach, cauliflower, or mushrooms. These foods are shown to lower the risk of flare-ups. Fruits, especially cherries, are recommended as alternatives to other sugary snacks.
Also “lean meat, like chicken and turkey, is okay. Leafy greens and vegetable protein like soy are also a good source,” says Singh. “Moderation is the key and avoiding the foods is the most important thing.”
- Breakfast: Swap out the ham and bacon for an equally salty, smoky option like an omelet with smoked Gouda and Chipotle Tabasco sauce. Or try something totally different like some yogurt with fresh fruit. Try to avoid flavored yogurts since some of them may contain high-fructose corn syrup.
- Lunch: Swap your favorite burger for a grilled chicken sandwich or veggie burger. And instead of that side of chips, crackers, or pre-packaged cookies, try a fresh piece of fruit or if you want something more savory, some grilled vegetables or stuffed mushrooms. Wash it down with a bottle of kombucha or carbonated water instead of a beer.
- Dinner: Swap your shellfish platter for another, low-purine, fish like salmon. Researchers have also found that you can reduce the amount of purine in certain high-purine fish including turbot, European barracuda, beltfish, Japanese Spanish mackerel, and sea catfish by boiling it, which transfers the purine from the fish to the boiling water.
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Know Your Uric Acid Leveland Go For Six
Knowing your uric acid level is as important as knowing your other healthy benchmark numberslike cholesterol, blood pressure and heart rate. The Gout Education Society recommends people with gout aim for a healthy uric acid level of 6.0 mg/dL or below. Your doctor will determine the level that is right for you. Its also important to check your uric acid levels every six months to ensure target levels are being met.
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.
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