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Ten Ways to Manage Gout

July 27, 2011 by Lynn.

Gout is considered to be the most painful form of arthritis, and is often described as excruciating. It is caused by an excess of uric acid in the blood, which is deposited around the joints in sharp crystals that trigger pain and inflammation.

The incidence of gout doubled between the 1960s and 1990s, and is continuing to rise. It now affects about 850 out of every 100,000 Americans, mostly men middle-aged and older.

Gout can't be cured, but it can be managed with lifestyle changes and gout medication. Are you doing all you can to manage your gout? Double check using this handy gout management checklist:

1. Avoid or limit your consumption of high purine foods such as red meat, fatty fish, yeast and legumes (peas, beans and lentils).

2. Avoid or limit alcoholic beverages, especially beer and wine, which are high in yeast.

3. Avoid or limit sugary drinks, including juice. One study found that two or more non-diet soft drinks a day increased the risk of gout by 85%.

4. Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water daily to help flush uric acid out of your system.

5. Eatlow-fat dairy products and fresh vegetables. Both have been shown to help prevent gout flare ups.

6. Maintain a healthy weight (gout is associated with obesity).

7. Experimentwith natural gout treatments such as apple cider vinegar, cherries, celery, omega 3 fish oils, and baking soda and to see what works for you.

8. Take a two-pronged approach to gout medications: anti-inflammatory drugs and painkillers to deal with attacks, and uric acid lowering drugs to prevent flare ups. Prescription colchicine is a frequently prescribed gout drug that both treats and prevents attacks.

9. Keep your blood pressure, cholesterol levels and blood sugar under control. High blood pressure and "bad" LDL cholesterol levels are associated with gout, as is diabetes.

10. Have your uric acid levels checked every few months to ensure they are under 6 mg/dL. (Note: Not everyone with high uric acid levels develops gout.)

Filed under: Gout Treatment and Prevention.

Tags: colchicine, gout management, gouty arthritis, gouty medication, gout treatment, gout drug, colchicine prescription, colchicine.ca.

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