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Diets For Gout - Gout Causing Foods

Tips for a Gout Diet

by Carolyn Simpkins, eHow Contributor Tips for a Gout Diet thumbnail

Gout is a painful form of arthritis caused by the buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It affects the joints in your body and often starts in the big toe. Although medicine is the best treatment for reducing uric acid, changing your diet can help prevent gout flare-ups. Foods high in purines can raise uric acid levels in your blood, and animal proteins might increase the risk of atherosclerosis, a common complication of gout. But there are foods and beverages that make gout attacks less painful.

  1. How Diet Affects Gout

    • Foods that contain high levels of purine can encourage a gout flare-up. Purine generates crystals of uric acid, which collect in the tissues and joints of your body. What you eat can also contribute to other conditions that often occur in patients with gout, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and atherosclerosis.

    Foods High in Purine

    • According to the Arthritis Foundation, many foods are high in purines, including all alcoholic beverages, oily seafood and shellfish such as anchovies, haddock and mussels, organ meats such as liver, and other meats such as bacon and veal. Foods that contain a moderate level of purines are most meats and seafood, and vegetables such as beans, asparagus, spinach and mushrooms. Avoiding foods with a higher level of purine and eating fewer foods with a moderate level might help reduce gout attacks. It is particularly important to avoid alcoholic beverages during a gout outbreak as alcohol affects how uric acid is removed from the blood.

    Reduce Animal Proteins

    • A good rule of thumb for a gout diet is to avoid or reduce animal proteins. Seafood and red meats are generally at least moderately high in purines. Eating less red meat and other animal proteins can help reduce the risk of atherosclerosis, which is the buildup of plaque in major arteries. This plaque consists of fat, calcium and cholesterol. Avoiding animal proteins can help reduce the amount of cholesterol in your diet.

    Foods That Might Help

    • Increasing the amount of water that you drink daily can help prevent gout flare-ups by diluting the uric acid in your blood. Though it is not known why, the Mayo Clinic notes that coffee can help lower uric acid levels in the blood. The Mayo Clinic fact sheet also notes that eating fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C, particularly cherries and other dark-colored fruits, can help lower uric acid levels. Talk with your doctor about fruits, vegetables and other foods that might help prevent gout attacks.

    Carolyn Simpkins

    Carolyn Simpkins is a freelance writer and editor specializing in food, history, health, pet care and gardening articles. She currently works as a writing center coordinator and tutor at a small liberal arts college in Atlanta, Georgia. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and women's studies from Agnes Scott College.

    References

    Via eHow.com







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