Foods For Gout

August 18, 2011

How to keep your joints and body feeling great with gout. Read on to find out what foods can help or hurt the condition.

Well all know that what we eat affects how we feel, so this article focuses on the inflammatory arthritis, gout, which can improve (and vice versa) through diet. Gout is triggered by the crystallization of uric acid inside the joints, causing swelling and severe pain. It affects over 8 million people, or 4 percent of the population, and the risk increases as we age. Unfortunately the condition has become more common in the US in the past few decades, in part because of high blood pressure and obesity.

So how does the supermarket fit into the gout equation? Certain foods can help, and exacerbate the condition.

Foods to choose:
Fresh produce, fruit and vegetable-rich diets help reduce purines in the body. Other foods to choose include low-fat dairy foods, complex carbohydrates, and especially citrus fruits. It is important to drink a lot of water and other non-sugary sweetened beverages.

Foods to avoid:
Seafood and meat: during a flare up, these should be avoided as they are rich in purines, which are ultimately broken down into uric acid. Tuna, herring and anchovies should be avoided most of the time.

Beer: you can imbibe occasionally, but beer drinking should not be a regular habit as it increases uric acid and makes it very hard for the body to eliminate it. Wine is a better choice, in moderation.

Turkey: higher in purines than other types of food, wild game should be kept to a minimum. Chicken and duck are safer choices.

Sugary beverages: sweeteners not only trigger the body to produce uric acid, you’ll also pack on the pounds! Stick to water!

High purine vegetables: keep to a minimum veggies like, asparagus, cauliflower, spinach, and mushrooms as they are higher in purines than others.

Along with diet, there are several modifiable risk factors, things that we can change, to help the condition this includes: obesity, high blood pressure, and alcohol intake. Daily exercise, limiting intake of red meat, and sugary beverages can also help.

As always please check with your physician before making any dietary changes.