Saturday, 31 May 2014


Awake  August 2012

Gout is one of the most common forms of arthritis and can be extremely painful. It is a disorder of the metabolism of uric acid caused by the presence of uric acid crystals in the synovial fluid of the joint, particularly in the big toe.

Uric acid is a waste product circulating in the blood and results in the breakdown of substances called purines. When uric acid builds up usually from insufficient elimination of urine, needle-like crystals can form in a joint at the base of the toe.

The joint may become inflamed and swollen, hot to the touch and excruciatingly painful. Even the slightest touch causes unbearable stabbing pain.

Primary risk factors are age, gender and genetics. Gout mainly affects men, especially those between the ages of 40 and 50.  Men are three or four times more likely to get the disease than women who rarely develop it before menopause.

Obesity and diet: Dietary management no longer seems to be focused on restriction of foods with high purine content but on treatment of the metabolic disorders associated with gout including obesity, insulin resistance syndrome or abnormal blood levels of lipids.

Drink: Excess alcohol consumption can inhibit the excretion of uric acid, causing a build-up.

Medical conditions: According to the Mayo clinic, gout may be triggered by certain medical conditions including untreated high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes and high levels of fat and cholesterol in the blood and narrowing of the arteries.

Medications: Products that increase the risk of gout include thiazide diuretics, low dose aspirin and antirejection drugs given to transplant patients.

Because gout attacks are linked to lifestyle, the following suggestions are made:
1. Sufferers maintain a healthy weight. Excess weight puts stress on joints.

2. Beware of crash diets that may temporarily elevate uric acid levels.

3. Avoid excessive animal protein. Eat lean meat of fish and poultry.

4. Drink alcoholic beverages in moderation.

5. Drink plenty of non-alcoholic liquids.

No comments:

Post a Comment