In the days of the depression, this medical condition was also known as “rich man’s disease” for the fact that it was assumed to be caused by a “rich” diet, as in a diet heavy with meat products, where the poor were usually unable to afford it.
This medical condition is diagnosed as hyperuricaemia, and is a form of arthritis, in the inflammatory form. The condition is characterized by recurring episodes of swollen and painful joint. The big toe is usually affected although other body parts such as the foot, ankle, knee and even the upper limb may be afflicted with the pain.
Primarily, the condition originates from elevated levels of uric acid in the blood. This is either attributed to diet or genetic factors. On the diet front, those who consumes more red meat and beer, or are overweight, may be more likely to suffer from gout. It is more commonly seen in men in their 40s and 50s, and post-menopausal women.
Red meat, seafood, alcohol and even some vegetables such as beans, peas and spinach are rich in purines. When the body is unable to remove the excess uric acid accumulation from the normal breakdown of purine-rich food, these crystallized compounds are deposited in the joint areas thus causing gout.
On the other hand, our kidney also naturally produces uric acid, so a genetic condition causes excess production. This may be genetically inherited in our offspring.
It was reported in the December 2017 issue of “Annals of Rheumatic Disease” that gout is associated with higher work absenteeism. This directly translates in loss of productivity for the company, and pain for you.
While there are medications to help manage gout, it would be good if you could implement holistic measures as well:
Avoid – Red meat, lamb, seafood (lobster, mussel etc), high-fructose food (corn syrup etc).
Drink – Plenty of water regularly, NOT alcohol or sodas, so as to prevent elevated uric acid levels in our body.
Ice Pack – While the above 2 ways looks at lifestyle choices, having an ice pack will help greatly when you have a gout attack. Using a cold compress soothes the inflammation.
© LOOMI Group 2018
This article is first published on loomigroup.com
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