With all the messages about improving your lifestyle, cutting your weight down etc, it is strange nobody mentions the crippling pain gout can cause. Some people probably don't even know about this disease, it is not common but is crippling for those afflicted by it. As it only affects about 5 in 1000 people then this form of arthritis does not get the media coverage it deserves, plus as it is not fatal then people tend to ignore it, but for sufferers then it is a serious issue. It is caused by excess uric acid in your bloodstream, that forms into sharp crystals. The crystals move around in the blood and fluids of the body, until they congregate around a joint.
The uric acid crystals have a party of sorts, and start to irritate the neighboring tissue. The party doesn't stop, so the tissue gets severely irritated and becomes seriously inflamed. Very suddenly, usually in the middle of the night, you have a big toe or other joint feeling like it is really on fire and burning up. The pain is abrupt, intense and liable to last for a week or more.
The pain and swelling can be debilitating for the area involved, often the toe or foot. It can mean no walking other than crutches for a week or so. The inflammed area is so sensitive that anything that comes into contact with it will cause extreme pain and discomfort. Patients report the sheet on the bed causes great pain during a gout attack. Gout does attack, but then retreats for a time and returns to attack another day.
If you take the holistic approach to gout, there are several lifestyle adaptations available for prevention or mitigation of gout. All of the recommended prevention methods are going to help you in other areas of your health as well. The first is losing weight and keeping it off, as well as a reasonable level of fitness. Extra weight on the body can lead to increased uric acid production in the body and increased risk of gout. Lifestyle can help your body's purification systems eliminate the excess uric acid. One of the easiet ways to help is to make sure you drink plenty of fluids like water and stay hydrated.
Water is essential to your body eliminating waste well, including uric acid. Another part of this practice is avoiding alcohol, especially on a regular basis. An occasional drink won't cause much problem of a problem, but long term exposure could be detrimental.
For the food aspects of diet, there are guidelines for gout prevention. Purines are a substance the body makes into uric acid. Wild meats and foods that involve the organs in an animal are very high in purines so they may help create excess uric acid. Some delicacies such as liver, kidney, heart, and brains should be strictly limited or eliminated for maximum gout prevention.
Shellfish and small oily fish such as anchovies, herring, and sardines are on the list to avoid as well. Following these changes will increase your health overall, not just your ability to avoid gout, and you will feel much better with more energy and vitality!.
To learn more about home remedies for treating gout for when you are already suffering from the disease, then head over to squidoo.com/GoutTreatments for some great tips.