The cause of gout is a high blood level of uric acids which is a waste product. The waste product is a breakdown of purines which are substances naturally found in your body. Purines are also found in several types of food.
The treatment of gout, in times past, included very strict dietary regiments but because of medications that are used to combat gout the regiments are not as harsh as they once were.
There still are some recommended dietary modifications though as they can greatly help your chances of avoiding gout flare-ups. Many medications for gout cause many, potentially serious, side effects so dietary modifications can be a better option than the medications.
Some of the foods that are high in purines and should be avoided are liver, brain, kidney, sweetbread, anchovies, peas, beans, mackerel, mincemeat, scallops, muscles, and herring. Other foods such as poultry, meat, and fish have lesser amounts of purines so it is suggested that they be eaten in moderation.
Other ways that you can lower the risk of gout naturally are:
1.Avoiding alcohol altogether or only drinking it in moderation, perhaps saving yourself for special occasions only. Drinking a lot of alcohol increases the risk of hyperuricemia, as the alcohol gets in the way of the natural removal of uric acids from the body. If you have gout and especially if you are having a gout attack alcohol should be avoided completely.
2.Make sure to drink plenty of fluids to flush the system of uric acids. Aim for around 2 liters of water a day, more if you are exercising or have a physical job.
3.Try to maintain a healthy weight. The more excess weight you are holding the more stress is then put on your joints increasing the possibility of gout.
4.Try to lose excess weight but do not do so by rapid weight loss diets as they can increase uric acid levels in the blood. In weight loss also avoid low-carb diets as they are high in fat and protein. Consuming too much of these types of foods can increase your chances of developing hyperuricemia.
Foods that are low in purines will help in keeping gout at bay. Below is a list of foods which are low in purines.
1.Breakfast – Cereals and breads, coffee, tea, oatmeal, eggs, fruits, juices, cheese (low fat), milk, and peanut butter.
2.Lunch – Nuts and peanut butter, pasta macaroni, soups, cream style soups, cheeses (low fat) and broths
3.Dinner – Pasta, macaroni, eggs, vegetables, breads and cereals, low-fat cheeses and soups.
Other foods and food items low in purines are gelatin, fats and oils (in small amounts), soda, sugar, syrups, and other sweets in moderation.
As with anything, moderation is the key to a low purine diet. Some foods which have a moderate purine level are: beef, lamb, pork, vegetables such as mushrooms, asparagus, cauliflower, spinach, wheat germ, all types of yeast and gravies.
It is OK to have these foods as long is it is in moderation. Even foods that are high in purines can be eaten occasionally unless you have gout or are having an attack of gout.