More about Gout and how best to prevent or manage it

By June 28, 2021 Health & Nutrition

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Most of you must have come across friends and relatives mentioning painful joints, high uric acid levels and Gout all in the same breath. Yes, more people seem to be afflicted by Gout these days. Maybe it’s something to do with the big city lifestyle. In the article below, the author puts together a brief tutorial on Gout. What you learn from the article may help you prevent Gout or at least manage it better if you seem to be suffering from it already. Team RetyrSmart

More about Gout and how best to prevent or manage it

Gout has for too long been associated with affluence and overindulgence of rich foods such as meat, seafood, and alcohol. It also gained a stamp of being a problem of the wealthy or one that only the first world must deal with. But now one finds more and more people being diagnosed with gout or raised uric acid levels in the metros.

What is Gout and what has it to do with Uric Acid crystals?

Gout is a common and complex form of arthritis. A person afflicted with Gout will be struck by sudden, severe attacks of pain, swelling, redness and tenderness in one or more joints, most often in the big toe. This painful attack can happen at any time of the day or in any season, even while one is asleep at night and Gout’s excruciating pain can wake you up.  your big toe is on fire. The affected joint is hot, swollen and so tender that even the weight of the bedsheet on it may seem intolerable.

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Other commonly affected joints include the ankles, knees, elbows, wrists, and fingers. The pain is likely to be most severe within the first four to 12 hours after it begins. Later attacks last longer and are more painful, says a report by the Mayo Clinic – the US. Untreated Gout can leave your affected joints immobile or painful, sore, reddened.

Gout symptoms may come and go, but there are ways to manage symptoms and prevent flares.

What causes Gout?

Our blood circulates throughout the body, collects the waste material formed due to actions right at the cellular level and takes it to the kidneys – where it is purified of the toxins. When what you eat had way too much uric acid – the kidneys cannot filter it and send it to the bladder to eliminate it through urine.

The excess urate crystals accumulate in your joint, causing the inflammation and intense pain of a gout attack. Urate crystals can form when you have high levels of uric acid in your blood. Your body produces uric acid when it breaks down purines — substances that are found naturally in your body. Purine compounds, whether produced in the body or from eating high-purine foods, can raise uric acid levels.

So what foods from the Indian diet contain purines?
We shall tell you the universal foods that are high in uric acids, but let us begin with the Indian diet, first.

  • One category of food that has high purines and causes a flare-up of gout after consumption is whole pulses. Do not have masur, rajmah, chana and chole – either in whole or in split (dal) form. Among vegetables, and fruits, avoid green peas, spinach, cauliflower, French beans, brinjal, mushroom, custard apple and mud apple (chickoo).


Universally, the following foods are high in purine and must be avoided or eaten in moderation by gout sufferers.

  • High-Purine Foods Include: 
  1. Alcoholic beverages (all types)
  2. Some fish, seafood and shellfish, including anchovies, sardines, herring, mussels, codfish, scallops, trout and haddock
  3. Some meats, such as bacon, turkey, veal, venison and organ meats like liver
  • Moderate Purine Foods Include: 
  1. Meats, such as beef, chicken, duck, pork and ham

Shellfish, such as crab, lobster, oysters and shrimp

Go easy on the addition of salt to the dishes you prepare. Avoid the use of adjuncts such as tomato, lime juice, curd, vinegar, kokum, amchur and pepper powder, etc. Banish the salt shaker from the dining table.

What foods to eat if you have Gout:

  1. Low-fat and non-dairy fat products, such as yogurt and skim milk.
  2. Fresh fruits and vegetables.
  3. Nuts, peanut butter, and grains.
  4. Fat and oil.
  5. Potatoes, rice, bread, and pasta.
  6. If you relish eggs and meats like fish, chicken, and red meat – you can have them in small quantities that have been okayed by your doctor.

According to the Mayo Clinic, being overweight increases the risk of developing gout. By the same coin, losing weight lowers the risk of gout. Research suggests that reducing the number of calories and losing weight — even without a purine-restricted diet — lower uric acid levels and reduce the number of gout attacks. Since your joints bear the brunt of the excess weight as it is they which carry the bulk around whenever you move, losing weight also lessens the overall stress on the joints.

Following a gout diet isn’t likely to lower the uric acid concentration in your blood enough to treat your gout without medication. You must still see the doctors with test reports of all that he/she has suggested. But the diet discipline may help decrease the number of attacks and limit their severity. Add regular exercise to the regimen, can also improve your overall health by helping you achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

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