What is uric acid?
This is a waste product that needs to pass through the urine. It is formed when your body breaks down purines found in the DNA and RNA of cells in your body and in your food of which:
- 85% comes from the break down of your own body cells and
- 15% comes from the break down of food cells.
Avoid crash diets and Atkins diets when treating gout
Not all diets are the same. A gout diet avoids foods that are high in purines like:
- seafood: anchovies, clams, fish eggs, herring, lobster, mackerel, mussels, oysters, sardines, scallops and shrimps
- meat products: internal organs, gravy and broth and
Moderate high in purines are the following food items: all other meat and fish, lentils, dried peas and beans, asparagus, mushroom and spinach.
For those familiar with the Atkins diet, you will notice lots of the food on your diet list are exactly the foods to avoid when having gout.
Why can you not go on a crash diet? Because when you lose too much weight in a short time, your body will need to break down more cells as usual which will cause higher uric acid levels in your blood.
How to treat gout with medicine?
For acute gout attacks, do not take Aspirin, as that will increase the amount of uric acid in your blood! Your doctor will know which painkillers are best for you, just remember that painkillers are hazardous to your stomach. Celecoxib is a less aggressive non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) for your stomach. Colchicine from Autumn Crocus helps extremely well in the first 12 hours of a gout attack, but since colchicine is toxic, you can only take as much until you feel nauseous.
For gout prevention, you can either lower your daily natural production of uric acid with allopurinol or increase your kidneys to pass more uric acid with probenecid. Do note that allopurinol lowers uric acid by increasing your levels of xanthine, which like uric acid can cause kidney stones. Therefore we recommend cherries and other flavonoid rich berries treating gout similar as allopurinol but without the side effects and in my opinion much more fun to pop in another cherry compared with another medicine.
This is in short how I treat gout and how you can treat gout too: follow an easy gout diet that avoids purines and includes cherries and other food good for gout. The best treatment will work in 2 ways: flushing out more uric acid and reducing the intake of food rich in purines.