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Around two thousand years ago, gout was referred as “disease of kings” because only wealthy people that is kings could afford to eat rich food so only they used to get this disease. But now, everyone can eat like kings so it has become very common these days and now called as “diseases of wealth”. It is mostly seen in men and in postmenopausal women.

What is gout?

It is an inflammatory arthritis caused due to the deposition of uric acid crystals in the joints. The excess uric acid forms small crystals called urate that is uric acid crystals. These crystals leads to inflammation which causes pain, redness and swelling of the joints. It is a characteristic of the base of the big toe.

What causes gout at the first place?

Gout is basically the diseases caused due to the diet and lifestyle which a person choses. The main cause of gout is purine rich diet. Animal sources like meat, poultry and seafood are high in purine. Purines after metabolism, gives their by products as uric acid. Even hydrogenated oils, sodium rich foods, processed foods refined carbohydrates, soda and alcohol and all contribute to gout. The yeast feeds on the sugar therefore, sugar is also one of the big culprit leading to gout.  People who are on low carbohydrate and high protein diet are also susceptible of getting gout. These food are highly acidic in nature and increases the level of uric acid in the body. Apart from raising uric acid levels, it is associated with many other health complications like obesity, kidney disorders, stress and insulin resistance.

How can gout be treated?

Gout is easily preventable and also reversible not with medicines but with the consumption of plant based nutrition dense diet. Plant based nutrition dense diet is rich in fiber, antioxidants, minerals like magnesium and potassium and also anti-inflammatory compounds which helps in reducing the inflammation and thus treating gout faster without any medication. Fiber found in plant foods binds to the uric acid and helps in its elimination. Fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds are all rich in fiber. Avocado, coconut water and banana being rich in potassium helps in balancing intracellular fluid level which relieves gout. Berries and cherries have anthocyanins and bioflavonoids which neutralises the uric acid found in the body. Omega-3 fatty acid rich food like flax seeds, nuts, chia seeds reduces the inflammation and thus relieves of pain and swelling. Cabbage, parsley, tomato, mushroom, basil, cucumber, kiwi. Pineapple, bell peppers and walnuts are other plant based foods which helps in treating gout effectively. One should totally refrain from use of alcohol, sugar rich foods, processed foods and animal sources of food like meat, poultry, seafood.

Take home message

  • Gout was once named as disease of kings because only kings could afford rich food but now everyone can afford rich food so it is now called as disease of wealth.

  • Gout is nothing but inflammatory arthritis which is caused mainly due to the deposition of the uric acid crystals.

  • Uric acid level increases in the body due to the consumption of foods rich in purine like processed foods, sodium rich foods, sugar, alcohol, animal foods like meat, poultry and seafood.

  • Plant based nutrition dense diet can effectively reverse and prevent gout.