Not one of the more commonly heard of diseases out there, gout tends to particularly affect people as they get on in years. This is a condition caused by poor metabolism of uric acid leading to the development of arthritis, with pain in the smaller bones of the foot being the main complaint. Usually, this pain will be manifested in the big toe.
The good news is that gout is generally avoidable if you take the right steps, which include eating the right foods, and much more, avoiding the wrong ones. Did you know that a high animal-protein intake, particularly as you grow older, could cause gout? Read on to find out more about the foods you should be avoiding to prevent gout:
You should not be surprised to see alcohol on this list, as it can be linked with quite a number of preventable diseases and health conditions, from liver failure to cancer, heart disease and gout. A study carried out by researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital showed that people who had anything from 2 to 4 beers weekly, developed a 25% higher chance of experiencing gout, while those who had up to 4 beers a day were at a 200% increased risk!
The study indicates that the problem might be the fact that since the liver has to excrete both alcohol and uric acid, the more alcohol there is in the body, the longer it will take to excrete uric acid, giving it a chance to do more damage.
Artificially flavored drinks
Alcohol and artificially flavored drinks are both bad for your health, and that is why you are advised to drink either water or freshly squeezed fruit juice only. The problem with artificially processed drinks is that they usually have high levels of corn syrup or fructose, which contain purines which when broken down, tend to lead to elevated levels of uric acid in the body, increasing the chances of your developing gout. The same thing goes for other common foods such as white bread and white rice, which are refined carbs. Basically, avoid anything with unhealthy sugars in it.
Under normal circumstances, red meats can be healthy, but as you get older, you are advised to limit your consumption of it, in order to prevent conditions such as gout. Like fructose, red meats contain high amounts of purines, so you will need to be careful. In particular, you should avoid beef, kidney, liver and other similar foods.
You’re also going to need to stay away from seafood, particularly varieties such as sardines, scallops, anchovies, herring, mackerel, haddock, tune and trout. These types of seafood are particularly high in purines.
You’ll need to replace the excluded foods with other healthy alternatives such as fresh fruit and vegetables, plant proteins such as beans and soy, and whole grains. Additionally, you don’t have to completely stay off the items on this list, but you do have to limit their intake, particularly if you might be at a high risk of developing gout, or already have it.
Here is a suggested guide as to just how much of these food items you can afford to indulge in:
As always, you should seek detailed medical advice from your doctor.