What Is Gout And What Causes It
Before we can look at foods to avoid with gout, it is necessary to briefly understand what it is.
Gout is a form of joint inflammation, caused by excessive uric acid in circulation .
When the bodys natural uric acid threshold is exceeded, painful crystals can form in and around the joints. These crystals trigger the characteristic symptoms and pain.
Not everybody with high uric acid levels will get gout, but those who do always have high uric acid levels. This indicates there are other factors at play, but from a dietary perspective uric acid is the focus.
Excessive uric acid in the blood stream is typically driven by two factors: genetic predisposition and the ingestion of high-purine foods. Obviously, the dietary factor we can control.
When purines we eat are broken down and metabolised by the body, uric acid is formed as a by-product of this process. Its normal and healthy for uric acid to be formed, but excessive amounts are problematic.
Therefore, consuming less purine-rich foods should lower uric acid levels in your blood, lowering gout risk.
At least, in theory.
Its actually not that clear-cut because other nutrients appear to aggravate gout symptoms too
Heres a list of foods to avoid if you have gout, based on real scientific evidence.
Things To Cut Down On
Meat and seafood
High intakes of red meat and seafood are associated with a greater risk of gout because of their high purine content and impact on uric acid production.
Foods that contain yeast, such as Vegemite and Marmite, are also high in purine.
Fructose is a simple sugar found in honey, fruit, some vegetables and sweeteners. Fructose increases purine metabolism, raising blood uric acid levels.
Avoid sweeteners high in fructose such as honey, brown sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, golden syrup and palm sugar. Check your tolerance for fruits, vegetables and other foods high in fructose.
Uric acid levels tend to be higher in people who regularly consume sugar-sweetened drinks. Those drinking one to two sugar-sweetened soft drinks a day are almost twice as likely to have gout as those who drink only one a month.
When it comes to whole fruit, results are not clear. While one study found a higher risk of gout with higher fruit intakes, another found a lower risk. The opposing results are partly confounded by the variation in fructose content of different fruits.
The effect of specific alcoholic beverages on blood uric acid levels varies. Beer is high in purine and increases uric acid more than spirits, while moderate wine intake appears neutral.
Celery Or Celery Seeds
Celery is a food traditionally used to treat urinary issues. For gout, extract and seeds of the vegetable have become popular home remedies.
Experimental use is well-documented, though scientific research is scant. Its thought that celery may reduce inflammation.
Adequate celery amounts for treating gout arent documented. Try eating celery many times per day, especially raw celery sticks, juice, extract, or seeds.
If purchasing an extract or supplement, follow label directions closely.
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Why Granny Smith Apples Are The Preferred Choice
This next study is important cause I find its conclusions very true since Ive felt the same experience with Granny Smith apples. Ive noticed a good way to keep the pounds off and control hunger more than anything which leads to eating less and losing weight is to eat a Granny Smith apple before a meal and you will notice that your hunger will subside and youll end up eating less. This is what I call a diet hack, a shortcut to losing weight. Take my advice, it works and so do the researchers of this 2014 study agree as well. The study studied seven varieties of apples on how the bioactive compounds affected the good gut bacteria of diet-induced obese mice. The researchers found that compared to all the other apple varieties, Granny Smith apples had the most beneficial effect on gut bacteria and thats why I eat mostly eat Granny Smith apples myself compared to all the other apples.
The researchers explain that Granny Smiths are high in non-digestible dietary fiber and polyphenols, and low in carbohydrates. Even after chewing and exposure to stomach acid and digestive enzymes, the compounds are unscathed when they reach the colon. The bacteria present in the colon then ferment the compounds, producing butyric acid that spurs on the growth of friendly gut bacteria, according to Medical News Today. If you are overweight and want to lose pounds, make sure to add Granny Smith apples in your diet. Youll thank me!
Is Apple Cider Vinegar Good For Gout
When we consume apple cider vinegar, we get a huge intake of needed nutrients and mineral, like potassium. It is essential when it comes to removing toxins from the body and eliminating the excess of water. But for us, gout sufferers, apple cider vinegar is beneficial due to the fact it helps us stay away from getting our body alkalized. In other words, apple cider vinegar will help us protect ourselves from the main cause we get gout or gout attacks.
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Apple Cider Vinegar And Gout
It is sometimes claimed that apple cider vinegar is anti-inflammatory and can help reduce inflammation with gout. However, there is no research to support that it has anti-inflammatory effects in humans or that it is effective in preventing gout and gout flares.
One study looked at a diet approach to controlling uric acid levels in the blood and found that following an alkaline diet increased the pH of the urine which was associated with increased excretion of uric acid in urine. The alkaline diet includes lots of fruits and vegetables, whereas the more acidic diet was more protein-rich. Vinegar was included in the alkaline diet, but it was not specified as apple cider vinegar.
A few of the health claims about apple cider vinegar have some supporting evidence and they could indirectly help with gout. Here is a closer look.
Apple Cider Vinegar As Gout Treatment
Gout has been battled by sufferers and studied by doctors and scientists since the earliest days of recorded medical history.
But theres no cure for the painful buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints.
People suffering from gout canand dotry anything to relieve the discomfort and inflammation, including a host of at-home remedies. Some work. Others dont.
Apple cider vinegar has been used for centuries as a cure-all for many health problems.
But is it an effective treatment method for gout?
In this article, Ill cover the possible benefits of taking apple cider vinegar, how it can affect gout, and any risks you may encounter.
Ill also talk about when you should talk to a doctor about your gout.
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Eat Cherries Or Tart Cherry Juice
Some limited studies have shown that cherry consumption may help reduce uric acid levels. Compounds in cherries called anthocyanins also act as anti-inflammatory agents and antioxidants.
A that included 633 people found that eating cherries or cherry extract over 2 days seemed to lower the risk of a gout attack by 35%, with benefits peaking at around three servings per day.
Tart cherry juice is available to purchase in some health food stores and online.
Apple Cider Vinegar For Gout: Best Natural Home Remedies
The sudden and intense needle-like pain of a gout attack can be unbearable. Soothing the hot, swollen, and sensitive joints affected by gout is often all you can think about when suffering through a flare-up.
What truly helps reduce the pain and inflammation caused by gout? Youve heard that apple cider vinegar for gout is a great natural home remedy, but does it work? How do you take it? What is the best time to take apple cider vinegar? Are there any adverse effects? Is it safe? We answer all these questions, and more, in this article!
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Gout Complications If Left Untreated
If left untreated, gout can lead to:
Kidney stones: Urate crystals may collect in the urinary tracts of those suffering from gout, resulting in kidney stones.
Advanced gout: Deposits of urate crystals can form under the skin in nodules called tophi. Tophi can develop in areas like your fingers, hands, feet, elbows, or Achilles tendons on the backs of your ankles. They are not painful, but they can become swollen and tender during a gout attack.
Recurrent gout/joint destruction: Untreated gout can lead to recurring attacksup to several times each year. It can also result in joint erosion or destruction.
Fruit Fructose And Gout
Fructose is what gives some fruits their natural sweetness. Researchers report a correlation between foods high in fructose and gout symptoms, which can include chronic pain. These fruits include apples, peaches, pears, plums, grapes, prunes, and dates. Its okay to eat these fruits if you have gout as long as you do so in moderation. Limit yourself to one to two cups per day. More importantly, avoid soda or soft drinks and juices that are sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup. Drink water or real fruit juices instead .
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Final Thoughts On Taking Acv For Gout
In this article, we learned that apple cider vinegar for gout could definitely be the way to go for symptom relief. Drinking or applying organic, non-pasteurized, and non-fermented ACV for gout may provide you relief by reducing excess uric acid buildup in your body. This is due to the acetic and malic acid content, as well as antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties within ACV.
Above we mentioned how to use ACV topically and internallyin a foot soak, as a rub, or as a drink combined with homemade juices. Since not everyone will experience the same level of relief with apple cider vinegar, you can increase the effectiveness when you combine ACV with cayenne pepper, baking soda, raw honey, or cherry juice as detailed above.
Aspirin And Diuretics Significantly Increase Gout Risk
Not exactly foods to avoid with gout, but the ingestion of some common medications sharply raise the risk of a gout attack.
Specifically, low doses of aspirin, which one in three middle-aged Americans takes regularly to help prevent heart disease .
The emphasis is on low doses because aspirin has a dual effect on uric acid levels. Very high doses above 3,000 mg promotes excretion of uric acid , whereas low doses prevent excretion .
In a study of 49 elderly patients, just 75 mg of aspirin per day increased blood uric acid levels by 6% within one week. A daily dose of 150 mg kept levels high during the second week, before coming down with 300 mg doses in the third week .
Considering the typical dose for heart disease prevention is 81-325 mg per day, it is no real surprise this dosage is associated with a doubling in gout risk. In fact, even the use of a low-dose aspirin for two consecutive days increases risk of recurrent gout attacks .
Im by no means recommending you cease your medications if you have gout, but its important to understand the pharmaceutical triggers. First speak with your doctor and closely monitor uric acid levels before making any changes.
And if you need a temporary painkiller, choose paracetamol or ibuprofen. No aspirin.
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Is High Fructose Corn Syrup A Problem
Yes, absolutely. High-fructose corn syrup is a known factor for gout flare-ups because it raises uric acid levels in your body. Its also used in far more pre-packaged and processed foods than you might think. When youre grocery shopping, always check nutrition labels. If corn syrup is an ingredient in a product, dont buy it.
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.
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Topical Cold Or Hot Application
Applying cold or hot water to inflamed joints may also be effective.
Studies and opinions on this are mixed. Soaking in cold water is most often recommended and considered most effective. Ice packs may also work.
Soaking in hot water is typically only recommended when inflammation isnt as intense.
Alternating hot and cold applications may also be helpful.
Chicken Beef And Other Meats Appear To Be Foods To Avoid With Gout
The conversion of purines to uric acid, in theory, causes gout.
Therefore high-purine foods are often suspected to trigger symptoms.
Meat, and to a lesser extent seafood, are prime suspects. This includes all the most common meats like beef, chicken, pork and lamb.
The data available somewhat confirms suspicions.
Each additional daily serving of meat or seafood is associated with a 21% or 7% increased risk of gout, respectively . This implies meat could be three times worse than seafood.
There was another similar study that found even greater risks associated with meat intake, but none for seafood. Overall this suggests seafood is far less of a concern than meat .
For those who already have gout, the impact of meat intake on symptoms is even worse. This is likely due to sharper increases in blood uric acid, as well as poorer clearance by the body .
Therefore if you have a history of gout, it is best to dramatically reduce your meat intake, and seafood as well to a lesser extent. Anecdotal evidence suggests avoiding dark part of salmon, and de-veining prawns/shrimp before eating.
You should also buy your meat direct from the butcher where possible, or at least the better quality choices in the supermarket. Sausages and low-quality ground beef may contain traces of organ meat that can cause big problems .
Summary: Frequent consumption of meat is strongly linked with gout risk. The impact of seafood appears far less severe, but there is a link.
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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.
Foods Containing Low Yet Sufficient Purine Conc Are As Follows:
Trust the power of Fruits:
Although not all fruits are appropriate for low purine diet. However, the options are still massive regarding low purine fruits. The idea is to replenish on necessary vitamins while avoiding over consumption of harmful high purine food bases. Depending on the uric acid produced as a result of metabolic by product, some of these ideal fruits are as follows:
Beneficial antioxidants inducing purines are found in the following foods:
- Nuts such as macadamia nuts, almonds, pistachios, cashews
- Seeds such as flaxseeds
- Vegetables such as squash, ginger, garlic, potato, zucchini
- Fruits such as strawberry, raspberry, pumpkin
Water is the hidden magic ingredient:
As cliched as it may sound, water is in fact the magic potion. It is not only required for that ever-glowing skin but also treats many health conditions. This is particularly true for conditions like Lesch-Nyhan syndrome, Gout, and renal blockade. All these conditions are the outcome of excessive uric acid accumulation in the body.
Water acts as an associate to uricosuric drugs . Apt. intake of water is essential to wash off and excrete the uric acid residues metabolized by uricosuric acid drugs.
Relish your Radish:
Radish is one of the most underrated vegetables especially when it comes to treating severe and chronic illnesses. Usually people tend to focus on greens and beans and ignore some of the most easily available and rather delicious vegetables such as radish.
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Importance Of Apple Skin
The true power of the apples is in the skin and the flesh which is closest to the skin. As such, never peel the apple before eating it. This is a common mistake some people make, believing that peel is useless. As a matter of fact, it is the best part of the apple and it should be consumed daily.
Skin and meat close to the skin contain flavonols which are beneficial. There are a lot of different types, but in a combination, they will help you with blood sugar, protect your heart and they will reduce toxins from the body. All of this is mandatory to get if you consume apples and it is something that can make a huge difference. I must repeat that apples must be consumed with their skin.
I must include several studies which can make a difference. The first one involved more than 90.000 people and they discovered that people who consume apples have less risk of developing stroke. This affects the cholesterol levels and reduces the risk, obviously. The second study discovered that people who have been consuming apples daily have 20% less risk of developing type 2 diabetes. This study involved more than 120.000 people, so it is definitely accurate.
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