Learn How Diet Can Help Control Gout

Because gout is caused in part by diet, diet can be the solution.

This video was originally published on NutritionFacts.org and republished with permission. NutritionFacts.org

Afflicting the joints of the body with episodes of severe joint pain due to inflammation, gout affects thousands each year. These painful bouts are caused by a build up of needle-like molecules of uric acid, which is what the body produces when it breaks down another biological chemical called a purine. Purines are molecules that are partly responsible for the makeup of DNA, so literally any plant or animal you eat will contain purines. If purines are in all food and purines are the root cause of the disease, how can diet control gout?

The answer lies in which foods we eat. It has been commonly known for ages that gout is the result of eating too much meat, seafood, alcohol, and other foods high in purines. However, most diet recommendations for sufferers of gout also suggest cutting out plant foods with high levels of purines. As it turns out, this was not the right move. After studying the effects of purine-rich foods and the risk of gout association in men, researchers concluded that while foods that are high in purines from sources like alcohol and meat were linked to a higher risk of gout, the purine-rich plant foods did carry the same association.

After testing the efficacy of meat and alcohol’s role in gout attacks, researchers investigated methods to rid the body of uric acid and found that an alkaline diet is quite effective. So if you or anyone you care about is suffering from gout, please share the news that a vegetarian diet can help control gout safely. Allopurinol, the main drug prescribed to patients, can cause hypersensitivity reactions in 2% of users, 20% of which can be fatal.

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