Balancing The Risks Benefits Of Alcohol
Moderate intake of alcohol appears to have relatively low health risk for many people. However, alcohol consumption remains a challenging lifestyle factor to study, as most of what health care professionals know about its effects comes from observational research.
To date, no long-term randomized trials of alcohol consumption have been completed. Also, multiple lifestyle factors are associated with patterns of alcohol use and can confound research results.
It is possible that many of the health benefits and risk associated with alcohol consumption could be unrelated to the alcohol intake itself. Because of these factors, experts disagree on a safe or recommended amount of alcohol to consume.
Defining moderate alcohol use
Moderate drinking is defined by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 20202025 as:
- Females Up to one drink per day, or no more than three drinks on any single day, and no more than seven drinks per week
- Males Up to two drinks per day, or no more than four drinks on any single day and no more than 14 drinks per week
A standard drink is typically defined as:
- Beer: 12 fluid ounces
- Wine: 5 fluid ounces
- Distilled spirits : 1.5 fluid ounces
These recommendations pertain to people of legal drinking age. Many studies show significant risks for children under 21 who drink alcohol. Therefore, no amount of alcohol is recommended for this age group.
Benefits and risks of moderate alcohol use
Consider the benefits and risks of moderate alcohol use.
Fact: Gout Can Impact Your Knees Elbows And Other Joints
Your first gout attack often strikes at the joint at the base of the big toe, but gout can occur in any joint most commonly the ankles, knees, elbows, wrists, and fingers. Additionally, as Robert Keenan, MD, a rheumatologist with Articularis Healthcare in Summerville, South Carolina, previously told CreakyJoints that, gout tends to flare in areas that already have arthritis.
Gout attacks are often a sudden burst of pain that feels like your joint is on fire. The affected joint will feel hot, swollen, and so tender that even the weight of a bedsheet may feel intolerable. The pain is likely to be the most intense within the first four to 12 hours after an attack begins, according to the Mayo Clinic.
After the pain subsides, some joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks. Later attacks are likely to last longer and affect more joints, especially if left untreated.
As a general rule, gout works its way up the body, Dr. Keenan said. If its not treated, it works its way up from the big toe, through the ankle, to the knee, and then to the lower spine and so on.
Fact: Dairy Products Can Help Lower Uric Acid Levels
Where the misconception stems from is unclear, but what we do know is that people with gout do not need to avoid all dairy foods, as they are low in purines, according to Dr. Prest. Additionally, studies have shown that consuming low-fat milk, yogurt, and other dairy products reduces uric acid production and increases uric acid excretion from the body. For example, a 2011 study published in the journal Current Rheumatology Reports found that, low-fat dairy intake has a moderate urate-lowering effect.
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Health Benefits And Nutrition Facts
Tomatoes are a healthy, low-calorie food that is enjoyable raw or cooked. Raw chopped or sliced tomatoes contain only 32 calories per cup while providing 27% of your daily recommended vitamin C intake. Vitamin C protects your cells from damage and boosts your immune system and skin health. They also contain vitamin K, vital for blood clotting and healthy bones, and fiber for improved digestion.
Tomatoes contain antioxidants like lycopene, beta-carotene, and quercetin, which have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.
|Tomato: Nutrition Facts|
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.
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Citrus Fruits Cause Inflammation
Some people believe that they should avoid citrus fruits because the acidity is inflammatory. However, this is not the case. In fact, citrus fruits have anti-inflammatory benefits, as well as being rich in vitamin C and antioxidants.
Grapefruit juice can, however, interact with some medicines that doctors use to treat arthritis. People who are undergoing treatment should check with a doctor before incorporating it into their diet.
Wrapping Your Feet In Cabbage
Some users like to wrap the leaves of the cabbage around the affected joint. They claim that this is more than just effective method and that the results are noticed immediately. I searched for the reason why this happens and I discovered that the explanation lies in the enzymes cabbage leaves will release when wrapped around a joint. Red or green cabbage is less important fact to consider.
Also Check: Best Home Treatment For Gout
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.
Lifestyle Changes May Help Lower Risk Of Gout Attacks
May 4, 2012
Dear Mayo Clinic:
Are there natural ways to prevent gout attacks or at least lessen the severity? I do not want to take medication if it’s not necessary.
If you have been diagnosed with gout, you can make lifestyle changes that may help lower the risk of future gout attacks.
Gout is a form of arthritis that happens when sharp particles, called urate crystals, build up in a joint, causing severe pain, tenderness and swelling. One joint commonly affected by gout is located at the base of the big toe. Urate crystals form when high levels of uric acid are present in the blood.
Your body produces uric acid when it breaks down purines substances found naturally in the body, as well as in certain foods. Uric acid usually dissolves in your blood and passes through your kidneys into your urine. But sometimes your body either produces too much uric acid or your kidneys flush out too little uric acid. When this happens, gout often results.
One of the most helpful ways to prevent gout attacks is to maintain a healthy body weight. Research has shown that excess weight is a major risk factor for developing gout. If you are overweight, losing weight can lower uric acid levels in your body and significantly reduce your risk of gout attacks.
Finally, if lifestyle changes aren’t enough to control gout, very effective medications are available. If you decide to try medication, talk to your doctor about which one is right for you.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Gout
An episode of gout is called a gout attack. Gout attacks are very painful and can happen quite suddenly, often overnight. During a gout attack, symptoms in the affected joint may include:
- Intense pain.
- Tenderness, even to light touch, such as from a bedsheet.
- Warmth, or a feeling like the joint is on fire.
- How long does a gout attack last?
A gout attack can last a week or two. Between gout attacks, you may have no symptoms at all.
Fact: Gout Affects Both Men And Women
Yes, gout is more common in younger men than in younger women, because women tend to have lower uric acid levels, according to the Mayo Clinic. After menopause, however, womens uric acid levels approach those of men, and the rate of gout in men and women becomes a little more even. Thats why women who do develop gout tend to show signs and symptoms after menopause, whereas men are more likely to develop the condition earlier, usually between the ages of 30 and 50, Mayo Clinic notes.
However, even though gout is more common in older women than in younger women , keep in mind that you can get gout at any age. Check out our podcast The Gout Show, which features some stories of gout patients who were diagnosed in their 20s and 30s.
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Can You Stop Gout
It ought to be fairly evident why youd want to get rid of gout, but is it feasible really?
Sure can be, but theres not a one-size works with all solution.
In the next section, well come to be exceeding whats worked very best for us!
You wont want to miss out on this free training video.
NOTICE: Id highly recommend going to your doctor or seeing a specialist about this situation, since we arent experts. See our medical disclaimer for more details.
We dont know what will work for you, but we know whats worked for us and others
What Else Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider About Gout
Consider asking your healthcare provider:
- What is causing the gout?
- Do I have any joint damage?
- What can I do to prevent future attacks?
- Can any gout medications help me?
- How long will I need to take gout medications?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Gout is a painful form of arthritis. Extra uric acid in your body creates sharp crystals in the joints, leading to swelling and extreme tenderness. Gout usually starts in the big toe but can affect other joints. Gout is a treatable condition, and the uric acid level can be decreased by medication and lifestyle changes. Talk to your healthcare provider about medications that can reduce uric acid levels. They can also discuss changes you can make to your diet and lifestyle to prevent and reduce gout attacks.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 11/15/2020.
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Whats The Outlook For People With Gout
Untreated gout can lead to permanent joint damage. The buildup of uric acid in the joints and soft tissue is called tophus. Some people with gout can also develop other health problems, such as severe arthritis, kidney stones and heart disease. Its important to discuss your symptoms with a healthcare provider.
Achieve A Healthy Weight
Obesity may be a primary consideration to reduce levels of uric acid in the blood. Insulin resistance is commonly seen in those who are obese and it may be involved in the development of gout. Insulin resistance has been shown to decrease the amount of uric acid that is cleared in the urine. A condition known as the ‘metabolic syndrome’ is a cluster of symptoms which includes insulin resistance, along with tummy obesity, high blood pressure and abnormal blood fats – for example, high cholesterol. This condition is strongly associated with high uric acid levels, which can be improved with slow, gradual weight loss.
Weight loss has been shown to improve insulin resistance and therefore reduce uric acid levels in the blood. However, it is important to avoid strict diets such as low-carbohydrate and high-protein diets. These may increase consumption of purines, a compound that breaks down into uric acid. Additionally, rapid weight loss through strict dieting can result in breakdown of tissue. This can temporarily cause a rise in uric acid levels. A gradual, safe weight loss of 1-2 lbs a week can help to achieve an optimal body weight.
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The End Of Gout Your Fast Track System
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 in the eating. And you can start on this straight within minutes of receiving the program away.That really helped my problem of Mayo Clinic Gout What Fish Can I Eat.
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!
What Food To Eat
Now that you know what foods to avoid, how do you know what foods are safe to eat? Your gout diet should include plenty of the foods on this list as they produce no or very little uric acid when digested.
- Fruits and vegetables: all fruits and vegetables are fine and cherries could even help prevent attacks of gout as it lowers uric acid levels
- Whole grains: oats, barley, brown rice, others
- Dairy: low-fat dairy products provide many benefits as part of a gout diet
- Legumes: beans and lentils are great proteins as are soybeans and tofu
- Nuts: nuts and seeds like almonds and sunflower seeds
- Drinks: coffee and tea
- Oils: when cooking, stick to plant-based oils like olive oil or canola oil
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Fact: Diet In Addition To Medication And Lifestyle Changes Can Help Manage Gout
Gout treatment aims to get your uric acid level to 6 mg/dL or lower to dissolve or prevent crystals, according to the American College of Rheumatology. Even with super rigid diet restrictions, most gout patients will only be able to lower their uric acid levels slightly as little as 1.0 mg/dL, according to the Gout and Uric Acid Education Society.
Treatment for gout generally falls into two categories: Medications that help reduce pain and inflammation during a gout attack, and medications that help prevent future gout attacks by lowering uric acid levels. According to guidelines from the American College of Rheumatology, people with gout who get two or more attacks a year should be on medication to lower uric acid levels. People with gout tophi or evidence of joint damage from gout should also be taking uric acid-lowering medication.
In addition to medication, your doctor may also suggest a few lifestyle changes to reduce your risk of a gout attack and protect your joints. Exercise, increasing your fluid intake, and losing weight are all helpful to lessen the wear and stress on your joints, adds Dr. Prest.
Fact: You Can Eat Meat And Other High
Dr. Prest says cutting back on purine-rich foods can help manage gout and may help reduce symptoms during a flare or gout attack. But you dont have to eliminate red meat or other high-purine foods entirely just limit your intake of them. Dr. Bose suggests you keep a food and symptom diary to help identify triggers. That way when you have a gout flare, you know which foods to cut back or avoid until your symptoms improve.
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How Can Gout Be Treated
When it comes to treating and managing this condition, making healthy lifestyle decisions is the right place to start. Restrict or eliminate meat, refined carbohydrates, and alcohol, but also add more beans, legumes, whole grains, fruits, veggies, and low-fat or fat-free dairy into your daily diet. This kind of diet will help, but also incorporate regular exercise into your weekly schedule to keep your bodyweight down. Weight management, exercise, and smart dietary choices are key steps, but your family doctor may need to prescribe medication to reduce your uric acid levels and your Doctor of Podiatric Medicine may inject local anesthetics and cortisone in your affected big toe joint to stop the excruciating pain associated with a sudden gout attack.
Fact: Gout Can Lead To Permanent Damage Joints And Heart Problems
Gout attacks can be extremely painful. Patients report difficulty sleeping or pain so severe it hurts to even tuck your toe into the bedsheets. Wearing shoes may seem impossible. But gout attacks tend to come and go, and gout may not cause many symptoms between attacks. This can cause gout patients to not fully understand the behind-the-scenes damage that gout can do your body between attacks.
There are several serious gout complications to be aware of. To start, gout that has become more progressive can cause clumps of urate crystals and inflammatory cells know as tophi to form under the skin. These nodules can erode the joints and surrounding skin and tissue, causing damage and eventual joint destruction.
Gout or, more specifically, the high uric acid levels that cause gout can also lead to kidney stones and kidney disease. As we grow older, the kidneys cant process as much uric acid, Puja Khanna, MD, associate professor in the division of rheumatology, previously told CreakyJoints. This inability can cause uric acid to crystalize and form kidney stones, which are not only painful but harmful to the kidney.
All of these potential complications underscore the importance of getting gout properly diagnosed and treated with medication that keeps uric acid at a healthy level and prevents further attacks.
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