There is a grain of truth in the saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Because gout is caused by the presence of uric acid crystals in any of the many joints in the body, it is possible to prevent your having gout by avoiding or mitigating the accumulation of uric acid in your system. Uric acid is the waste product, which the body produces when processing the naturally occurring purines in the food that we eat and what is naturally produced by our bodies. Because of this, it is indeed possible to lower the level of uric acid present in our body. While you can take medication to lower uric acid in your body system, you may wish to take the non-medication avenue when addressing your gout problem.
Pay Attention to What You Eat or Drink
To a large extent, many medical problems arise from people ingesting the wrong kind of foods or drinks. Because gout is caused by the formation of uric acid crystals in the joints of the body as it processes food that are high in purines, eating less of these can help a lot towards avoiding gout attacks. Avoid eating red meats, sweet breads, even vegetables like asparagus, broccoli or artichokes. It will be useful if you keep a list of these high purine foods handy on your refrigerator door. You may also want to keep track of what you ate or drink after which you had a painful gout attack. Some gout attacks in certain people are triggered by drinking beer. If you love to eat steaks, you may opt to order the leaner cuts of meat when you eat out as the marbled cuts would have a higher purine level. Eat more fruits and vegetables that are high in Vitamin C, which stimulates the production of calcium carbonate, which in turn reduces acids in the body. Fruits and vegetables also have more roughage which help the body eliminate waste and enable it to function more efficiently. It is also advisable to drink a lot of water to help your kidneys to process the uric acid out of your body. You may wish to develop the habit of drinking an 8 oz. (237 ml) glass of lukewarm water with the juice of one lemon.
Having a lot of fluids in your system also allows the synovial fluid in the joints more effectively and clear out the uric acid from your joints. You should also eat foods that are rich in potassium such as spinach, avocado, dried peaches, bananas, orange juice, carrots, a baked potato (with skin), kidney beans, lima beans, yams, cantaloupe or dried yams. The mineral potassium is essential in gout prevention because it regulates the uric acid levels in the body.
Exercise and Lose Weight
It has been observed that people who are obese are more prone to gout attacks. Therefore, it will be beneficial if you can bring your weight down to a healthy level. However, you should lose weight gradually because losing weight too rapidly can only increase the level of uric acid in your body resulting in that familiar painful gout attack. A change in lifestyle that results in a gradual weight loss will also enable you to keep the pounds off more permanently.
Exercising also has the effect of increasing the level of synovial fluids in the joints that help flush out the uric acid from the body.It is indeed possible to act proactively in minimizing gout attacks and/or in making them less severe.