Well, it’s that season again. Garden-ripe tomatoes and beer…and maybe a pizza or two… and you have a prescription for gout.
Gout is a form of arthritis that affects the big toe, other peripheral joints, tendons and kidneys. The first sign of an attack of gout is acute needle-like pain caused from uric acid crystals poking into the surrounding tissues which turns the joint bright red. Generalized fever may result. Gout happens from either overproduction or under-processing of uric acid, which allows it to build up in the blood, tissues, and urine. Uric acid is a waste by-product of protein breakdown. In most cases the digestive tract is not producing enough uricase, a digestive enzyme responsible for the breakdown (oxidation) of uric acid.
Ninety percent of gout cases occur in overweight men over the age of 35. Gout, often called “rich man’s disease”, usually runs in the family. It may also be associated with improper digestion, toxic bowels, kidney stones, athlerosclerosis, overeating of rich and fatty foods, drinking too much alcohol, crash diets, stress, certain medications (blood pressure, chemotherapy and antibiotics), yeast infections, surgery or injury to the joints.
It is diagnosed in the medical profession by symptom and/or by inserting a needle into the joint to extract a small amount of joint fluid, which is then examined microscopically for the uric acid crystals.
Avoid These Foods:
During an active bout of gout, dissolve and process uric acid crystals by avoiding the following high purine-containing foods*:
Alcohol (all but rum and vodka), Anchovies, Apples and Apple Cider, Aspirin (causes crystal formation) Beef, Beer, Brains, Brewers yeast, Chocolate, Crab, Cranberry juice, Dark Grapes, Fresh fruits in general (except those listed below), Fresh Pineapple, Glycine supplements (converts to uric acid), Hot dogs, Jams/jellies, Kidney, Liver, Lobster, Meat Stock, Organ meats of all types, Peanuts, Pies, Pop (fruit flavored), Raisins, Rhubarb, Sardines, Squab, Tomatoes (fresh/canned/juice) Turkey, Veal, Whole wheat cereals, Whole wheat bread.
*Purine is one of four basic building blocks that combine in various ways and amounts to make up amino acids which are the building blocks of protein.
Use These Foods in Moderation:
Asparagus, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Dried Beans and Lentils, Lima beans, Mushrooms, Onions, Peas, Radishes, Spinach.
Eat More of These Foods:
Apricots, Bacon (crisp), Bananas, Beef (twice weekly only), Bread (white or rye), Chicken, Buttermilk, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Celery and Celery juice, Cereals (any except whole wheat types), Cheese, Cherries (by the concentrated ounce or by the pound), Chicken soup, Comfrey tea, Corn, Cottage cheese, Custard, Eggs, Fish, Grapefruit, Green grapes, Green beans, Ham (lean), Iced tea, Jell-O (not strawberry), Kava coffee, Lemonade, Lettuce, Nuts (all except peanuts), Oranges, Peaches, Pears, Pineapple (canned), Plums (any color), Pop (all but fruit flavored), Pork, Postum, Potatoes (white or sweet), Rice, Rum, Sanalac (beverage), Strawberries, Vodka, Watermelon.
Most cases of gout can be treated with diet alone.
Do not add extra salt to food at this time.
Drink lots of distilled water.
Eat 75% raw whole foods for one month to balance uric acid formation. Eat high potassium foods to put acid crystals back into solution so they can be eliminated.
Reduce sugars, rich gravies, caffeine, fried foods and saturated fats.
Start a weight loss program (not a crash diet).
Apply plantain, ginger, fresh comfrey or a poultice of cayenne and wintergreen oil to the inflamed area to help alleviate pain.
Note: Acupuncture and Honeybee venom therapy (called apitherapy) have been known to give good results. Bee venom stimulates the immune system and acts as an anti-inflammatory.
Supplements used to treat gouty arthritis:
A-C Carbamide (Standard process Labs), Alfalfa, Aloe Vera juice, Autumn Crocus (Colchicum autumnale is the herb which the drug colchicine was originally isolated from), Bilberry extract, Birch, Black cherry juice, Buchu (Green ) tea, Burdock, Cayenne, Cherries (1/2 pound/day), Chromium picolinate, Devil’s Claw, DMSO, Essential Fatty Acids, Flax seed oil, Folic Acid, Germanium (to reduce pain/swelling), Glucosamine Sulfate, Hawthorne Extract, Homeopathics (Arnica, Pulsatilla, Urtica, Colchicum, Ledum), Hyssop, Juniper, Kelp, Pantothenic Acid, Potassium broth (See broth recipe below), Pychnogenol (grape and pine bark), Quercetin (inhibits the enzyme xanthine oxidase which makes uric acid, also an anti-inflammatory), SOD (antioxidant and free radical destroyer), Vitamins A, B Complex, and E, Vitamin C (increases urinary excretion of uric acid.), Wintergreen oil, Zinc (important in protein metabolism and tissue repair).
Ask your naturopath to help you find the right treatment for you.
Use this recipe to alkalyze and heal your system during the painful process:
2 large potatoes, chopped or sliced to approx. 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup carrots, shredded or sliced
1 cup celery, chopped or shredded, leaves and all
1 cup any other available vegetables (beet tops, kale, turnip tops, parsley, onion, zucchini, etc.)
Add some fresh herbs such as sage, rosemary, thyme, garlic, etc.
And a touch of cayenne or a couple beef bullion cubes for flavor.
1 1/2 quarts water
Cover and cook slowly for about 1/2 hour. Strain, cool until just warm and serve. If not used immediately, keep in refrigerator and warm up before serving. Compost the vegetables or give them to your pets. Great for alkalizing your body and is super mineral rich.
Drink 8 oz. broth as a hot drink two times daily. Makes about 3 servings.