Gout is a debilitating form of arthritis caused by the build up of uric acid in the body. This leads to the formation of crystals of urate that deposit in tissues in the body, particularly at the joints, and cause inflammation (arthritis). Gout is considered a chronic disease; large deposits if uric acid can cause joint destruction and kidney failure.
Gout appears to be related to an inherited abnormality in the body’s ability to process uric acid. Uric acid is a byproduct of the breakdown of purines that are present in many foods that we commonly eat. Control of diet is regarded as one approach to managing the disease.
Elevated levels of uric acid in the blood is regarded as a precursor to developing gout. This may lead to gouty arthritis which is an extremely painful attack with rapid inflammation of the joints. As gout progresses the attacks occur more frequently and spread to other joints.
Risk factors for gout include obesity, excessive weight gain, moderate to heavy alchohol use, high blood pressure, and abnormal kidney function. Specific conditions can also cause attacks of gout, these include dehydration, injury to the joint, fever, excessive eating, heavy alchohol intake (particularly beer which contains purines) and recent surgery.
Treating gout involves measures that reduce the inflammation at the joints through use of medication. However, preventing gout attacks is regarded as equally important as treatment. Maintaining fluid intake is a good measure against gout attacks along with weight reduction, dietary changes, reduction in alchohol intake and medications that lower uric acid in the blood stream.
In recent years a dietary and lifestyle approach to managing gout has gained acceptance as an alternative to medication. Certain foods that contain an excess of purine can increase the risk of gout attack. There is a clear link between excess weight and gout attacks; prevention involves reducing dietary fat and high calorie foods combined with a regular aerobic exercise regime.
To treat gout naturally you should avoid alchohol as much as possible since alchohol can prevent the natural removal of uric acids; you should also drink plenty of water to help with this process. Lose excess weight and maintain a healthy body size. Eat healthy foods and in particular those that are low in purines.