“Gout, Diet and What To Eat”

Millions of Americans are diagnosed with a painful form of arthritis commonly known as gout, which is likely tied to the national obesity epidemic.  Rising rates of both obesity and high blood pressure appear to account for most of the increase in gout. In a recent study, more than 21 percent of men and women had high uric acid levels, versus only 3 percent in the 1988-94 surveys. So, what can we do to curtail the ever-increasing risk of being a victim of gout?  Studies have shown that consuming certain types of food can bring on a gout attack.  Substances known as purines are present in foods, which can be turned into uric acid in the body. Foods high in purines increase the risk of a person developing gout. Certain food and drink, such as alcohol and red meat, can trigger a gout attack. With too much uric acid, crystals can form in the joints, causing severe pain, tenderness, redness, and inflammation. Gout most commonly affects men, but also women who have been through menopause. A gout “attack” can come on suddenly.

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