Gout is a type of inflammatory arthritis caused by excess uric acid in the blood. Once too much uric acid accumulates in the bloodstream, it forms needle-like crystals that lodge in and around joints, causing excruciating pain.
The good thing is that gout symptoms are manageable. Alongside medications andgout supplements, dietarychanges can help prevent painful attacks and improve an individual's quality of life.
In this article, you'll learn more about what nutrients to include in your diet, as well as gain an idea of how certain types of food could affect your gout.
What Foods Should You Limit Eating?
The primary dietary modification that doctors recommend is a low-purine diet.
Purines are chemical compounds that are naturally found in foods. When digested, the body produces uric acid as a by-product. This is not a problem for healthy individuals, as their bodies can efficiently remove excess uric acid.
However, the circumstances are different for people with gout whose bodies struggle to eliminate excess uric acid. Fortunately,researchshows that reducing the amount of purine-rich foods in the diet can reduce the risk of gout attacks.
There are a few foods that people with gout should limit or avoid altogether to minimize gout flare-ups. Here are some examples:
- Animal Protein
Animal meat contains high levels of purines. Therefore,it's recommended to eat these types of foods in moderation. The sweet spot is around 3 to 6 ounces per day, which is equivalent to 1 to 2 servings.
Here are the types of animal proteins that you should consume in moderation:
- Red meat like beef, pork, lamb, goat, and mutton
- Poultry like partridge, goose, duck, and chicken
- Kinds of seafood like crab, lobster, oysters, mussels, and shrimp
- All organ meats like liver, kidneys, brain, and sweetbreads
- Game meats like venison, veal, and pheasant
Alcohol can disrupt the kidney's ability to expel excess uric acid in the body. According to Theodore R. Fields, MD, a rheumatologist at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City, alcohol causes the uric acid to be pulled back into the body instead of expelled in the urine. This may result in high levels of uric acid in the blood.
As a rule of thumb, limit wine and beer consumption, and forego alcohol entirely when experiencing a gout attack. Consult your doctor if you're unsure of the recommended alcohol intake for your case.
- Fructose and Sugary Foods
High levels of fructose and sugary foods in the diet may increase the risk of a gout attack. This is mainly because sweets are calorie-dense and associated with obesity, which is known to cause gout flare-ups.
What Foods Should You Eat?
You can start transitioning to a low-purine diet by incorporating these types offood into your meal plan:
- Plant-Based Proteins
To reduce the intake of high-purine animal meat, consider eating plant-based substitutes rich in protein, such as tofu. You can also try incorporating vegetables that are high in protein into your diet. These include artichokes, avocadoes, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, and mushrooms.
- Vegetables and Fruits Rich in Vitamin C
Research shows thatvitamin C-rich foodssuch as cherries and guavas may help reduce gout attacks. Surprisingly, the same study suggests that purine-rich vegetables do not trigger gout flare-ups.
Some vegetables that you can add to your diet are asparagus, cauliflower, mushrooms, peas, and dark and leafy greens likespinach.
- Dairy Products
All types of dairy are safe, but low-fat dairy products appear to be more beneficial. A2012 study suggests that the consumption of dairy products, specifically low-fat variants, can significantly lower uric acid levels. Researchers theorize that casein and lactalbumin, two proteins found in dairy, increase uric acid secretion.
A small portion of nuts likewalnuts and almonds are a great snack option for people with gout, as they do not contain purine. They can also be added to main meals as an extra source of protein.
Boost Your Wellness with the Right Nutrition
With proper diet and lifestyle changes, it is possible to manage gout effectively and continue pursuing an active, healthy lifestyle. You can also incorporate high-quality organic supplements from Go-Out for high uric acid and gout maintenance.
Our uric acid supplements are formulated with 100% natural ingredients, including bromelain, tart cherry, and celery seed, to help support the well-being of individuals with gout. They are also non-GMO and cruelty-free.
Contact Go-Out today to learn more about our products.