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Gout Causes and Remedies

Mary Bodel MH, Yahoo Contributor Network

Gout And Ice I've read descriptions of the pain caused by gout. I've actually seen someone suffering from it, and I promise you the word suffer here is very appropriate. It's bad.

The problem stems from too much uric acid in the bloodstream. If the kidneys cannot filter it out, it recirculates throughout your body in hopes that it can be filtered out the next time. If that doesn't happen, they can begin to clump together as little crystals.

Eventually, due to weight, the body can't move them any longer. When that happens, the crystals get deposited into joints. Usually, the first joint to be effected is the right big toe.

Uric acid is a waste product from a component in protein. The component is called purine, and is found in both meat products and vegetable protein. It's unknown if vegetable protein poses as much a risk as animal.

The amount of purine in protein also differs between the different sources. As an example, all organ meat is higher in purine than other sources. Many sites have charts that show you which is which.

There are a couple of odd causes for gout flare ups. One is aspirin. It actually does increase the amount of uric acid in the blood stream, though it doesn't seem to be a primary cause for those on low dose aspirin therapy. Another cause is yeast, which contains purine.

To get over a flare up, there are several things you need to do. You need to keep the stricken area elevated, to help bring down the swelling. When you can stand the touch of anything on the joint, use ice as well. At first, this won't be possible.

A change in diet may be in order. If you consume a lot of meat products, particularly processed meat and/or organ meats, it's time to cut back a bit. You may also want to add cherry juice and strawberries to your diet, as they can help a great deal. This dietary change is not temporary, if you want to avoid further attacks, it needs to be permanent.

Your doctor may also prescribe medications. There are two that have a big impact in attack prevention. Make sure you read the literature that comes with these prescriptions as there are things you'll need to avoid while taking them.

It may seem like gout, while very painful, is a mild condition. That's not true. gout could be an indicator of current kidney disease or it could cause kidney problems if the uric acid levels aren't dropped. The kidneys are your body's filtration system. Just like a coffee filter can't withstand a heavy rock placed in it, your kidneys can't handle clumps of uric acid crystals.

When you are diagnosed with this illness, talk to your doctor about all of the medications you take, including supplements. There may be drug/herb interactions and the drugs for one condition could play a part in gout. You may also want to talk to a nutritionist. A nutritionist can help you plan a diet that fits your lifestyle and doesn't increase the possibility of a gout attack.

Published by Mary Bodel MH

Mary Bodel has been interested in medicine from an early age. Her particular interests are herbal remedies and eldercare. She started studying herbal remedies in 1981 and achieved the status of master herb...  View profile





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