How To Prevent Gout?

A chronic condition like gout is a form of arthritis that can prevented with the help of a gout-friendly diet and several lifestyle changes. It is a life-long condition that cannot be cured, however,the possibility of developing this condition can be reduced with the help of diet and certain lifestyle factors. Let us see what kind of diet and necessary changes one has to make in their lifestyle.

Gout diet

Diet has a pivotal role in eliminating the chances of gout. A person develops gout symptoms when the levels of uric acid in their body rise too much. Uric acid is a chemical substance that is already present within the body in low amounts. It is a waste product that gets eliminated by the kidneys through excretion. But sometimes, the concentration of uric acid is very high in the blood, which leads to its crystallization.

The main chemical from which uric acid is created is purine. One can reduce the levels of uric acid by controlling purine. Purine is present in certain types of foods and some foods contain very high concentrations of purine. Eating purine-rich foods in moderation will decrease your risk of developing this chronic condition.

According to the Mayo Clinic, foods that are laden with purines are:

  • Alcohol – Not all alcoholic beverages have high levels of purine. Some types of alcoholic drinks such as beer and distilled liquor are loaded with purines. Consuming such drinks frequently and in high quantities will spike uric acid levels, which can lead to gout flare-ups and gout attacks. So, choose your drink wisely and consume it in moderation, always.
  • Red meat – Beef, lamb, and pork me atisrich in purines. Consuming them regularly will increase the risk of gout flares. So, make sure you eat red meat in moderation.
  • Seafood – Some types of seafood and fish are high in purine. They may include tuna, crab, shellfish, herrings, mackerel, sardines, etc. You do not have to stop consuming them, as they are highly nutritious, all you can do is eat them in moderation.
  • Organ and glandular meat – Sweetbreads, liver, and kidneys can contribute to gout flares due to their high concentration of purine. Eat in small portions and in moderation.
  • Sweetened and sugary foods – Limit the consumption of fruits that are naturally sweet. Also, avoid consuming too much-sweetened foods such as baked goods like cakes, pastries, etc.

Some foods might be helpful in reducing the levels of uric acid in the blood. They are as follows:

  • Coffee – Caffeine is the main ingredient of coffee, according to some research, it can decrease the levels of uric acid in the blood. But it is necessary to note that, coffee has to be consumed in moderation too. Too much of it is not safe. You can talk to your doctor about how much coffee is safe.
  • Cherries – According to some research, cherries can reduce the possibility of gout attacks by decreasing the levels of uric acid in the body. It can help in eliminating uric acid from the body.
  • Vitamin C – C vitamin can reduce the chances of developing this condition.

Lifestyle changes for gout prevention

Making changes in the diet is not enough, you must include some changes in your lifestyle, which will be helpful in eliminating the risk of developing this chronic health condition. Below are some changes you need to make:

  • Lose weight and maintain a healthy weight – Maintaining your weight in a healthy range will be beneficial for keeping the levels of uric acid as low as possible. Overweight individuals have higher levels of uric acid in their body, which puts them at the risk of getting gout. Therefore, it is necessary to lose those extra pounds and become fit.
  • Regular exercise – Exercising on a regular basis will be beneficial for managing the uric acid levels in the body. Daily exercises as simple as walking, cycling, or swimming can be helpful.
  • Cutting alcohol intake – Alcoholic beverages are of different types and they all come with different concentrations of purines in them. Some have higher levels of purine while some contain it in low amounts. One must consume such alcohol in moderation.
  • Drink plenty of water – Water provides adequate hydration to the body. The kidneys will function optimally when there is enough hydration and it will be able to efficiently eliminate uric acid, which is nothing but the waste, from the body. This will ultimately eliminate the risk of getting gout.

When to see a doctor?

Sometimes the person might ignore the pain in the joints. It can be just a normal pain that might disappear, however, if the pain worsens and persists for several days then you must see your doctor immediately.There can be a possibility of gout flares. If this condition is ignored and left untreated for longer, it might progress and contribute to major health damage. You must see your doctor and inform them about all the symptoms you have been experiencing. Early diagnostic evaluation and timely treatment will prevent the condition from worsening.

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