When you have gout, the pain in your joints can be unbearable. Even with treatment, you may be eating foods that contribute to your symptoms.
By following a gout-friendly diet, you can harness your symptoms and avoid the pain and discomfort associated with this condition.
Dr. David Dieboldt and the team at Beltsville Foot and Ankle Center specialize in conditions such as gout. If you’re experiencing symptoms of this condition, Dr. Dieboldt offers lifestyle remedies and treatments to get your gout under control.
What is gout?
Gout is a condition that affects your joints. It’s actually a type of arthritis that happens when you have too much uric acid in your system.
Considered an inflammatory form of arthritis, gout usually affects only one joint at a time. The most common joints that gout affects are your big toe joints.
While your big toe joints are most often affected, your other foot joints and your knees may also suffer from gout.
When your uric acid spikes, you may have a flare-up of gout. During a flare-up, you can experience significant pain. You can also go months without a flare-up, known as periods of remission.
Remission may last for months to years before you experience another flare-up. There’s no cure for gout, but there are ways you can manage the condition to cut down on the flare-ups.
Foods that trigger gout
Believe it or not, your diet plays a large role in your gout symptoms. Uric acid crystals form when your body breaks down purine, a chemical naturally found in your body. Purine is also found in certain foods, which can cause excess uric acid in your body.
There are several foods that are high in purines that you should avoid when you have gout. Several of the foods you should avoid if you have gout include:
Not all alcoholic beverages are high in purine chemicals. However, alcohol makes it harder for your kidneys to eliminate uric acid, allowing it to accumulate in your body and provoke your symptoms.
Sugary foods and drinks
Your body breaks down sugar into uric acid. Any food product or drink that has a high-sugar content can trigger your gout symptoms. Steer clear of processed foods and drinks.
Certain seafood items are high in purines which can exacerbate your gout symptoms. You should avoid scallops, herring, tuna, mussels, and trout if you suffer from gout.
Several meats that you should steer clear of when you have gout include organ meats, such as liver and kidneys, which are high in purines. Red meats, turkey, and game meats are also foods to avoid when you have gout.
Avoid refined carbohydrates, as well. Foods such as white rice, pasta, and bread can exacerbate gout symptoms.
Shop for these foods instead
While there are foods you need to steer clear of with gout, there are also plenty of foods you can have. A few of the foods you should put in your cart at the grocery store include:
Skim milk is best when you have gout. Milk actually helps your body get rid of uric acid quickly, resulting in fewer flare-ups. Milk also reduces inflammation in your joints from excess uric acid.
Drinking coffee daily actually reduces the uric acid in your body. Not only does it slow the process of breaking purine down into uric acid, it also helps your body get rid of it faster.
Fruits and vegetables
Several fruits and vegetables are significant to your overall health and managing gout. One of the most promising fruits is cherries. When you eat cherries, it helps reduce inflammation in your body and reduces the levels of uric acid.
Whole grains are all okay to eat when you have gout, but beware of oats and grains with high fructose corn syrup.
Also, drink plenty of water when you have gout. Staying hydrated is one of the best ways to manage your symptoms and avoid pain.
To get help managing your gout symptoms, don't hesitate to call our Beltsville, Maryland office at 301-804-1174 or book a consultation online today.