Prevent painful attacks by tweaking your diet. By Dawn Chen
Photo: Francesco Dibartolo / www.123rf.com
Gout – a form of arthritis – is usually caused by excessive levels of uric acid in the blood. This build-up accumulates at your joints as your body consistently breaks down purines (chemical compounds found in certain types of food like seafood or meat). This is why gout attacks cause pain and swelling in one’s joints. Manage gout attacks by avoiding foods that are high in purine. Psst, this includes certain vegetables!
WHAT TO AVOID
High-purine foods you should avoid if you have gout:
– Processed meat like bacon
– Red meat like beef, pork and lamb
– All internal organ meats like liver and kidney
– Meat stocks and broths
– Shellfish like cockles, mussels, scallops and oysters
– Certain fish like sardines, herring, codfish, salmon, tuna and mackarel
– Alcoholic beverages
Moderately high-purine foods you should eat less of if you have gout:
– Certain vegetables like spinach, mushrooms, cauliflower and asparagus
– Certain fruits like bananas, grapes, strawberries and durian
WHAT YOU CAN EAT
Instead, gout patients should supplement their diets with low-purine foods:
– Whole grains like brown rice and oats
– Beans and legumes as a source of plant-based protein
– Water. Keeping hydrated helps to dilute uric acid in your body and flush it out.
– Fruits and vegetables. Just err on the side of caution and cut down on the ones that are high in purines.