Gouty Arthritis

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03/18/06

Gouty Arthritis-What is it?

Gout is a systemic problem, which means it is a condition that occurs throughout the body, caused by a build up of uric acid in the joints. An elevated blood level of uric acid, called hyperuricemia, occurs when the liver produces more uric acid than the body can get rid of through the urine, or when a diet high in rich foods produces more uric acid than the kidneys can filter from the blood and eliminate through the urine.

Over time, uric acid forms crystals and collects in the joint spaces, like throwing sand into any kind of machinery. These crystals cause swelling, inflammation, stiffness and pain. Gout usually affects the big toes of the feet first, then the ankles, knees and other joints of the body.

According to the National Institute of Health, gout is more common in men between the ages of 40 and 50. In women gout usually occurs after menopause. The condition is rare in children and young adults. Conditions that increase the risk of gout include diabetes, obesity, kidney disease and sickle cell anemia. Regularly drinking alcohol interferes with the removal of uric acid and can increase the risk of developing gout. Other risk factors include exposure to lead, rich foods and medications

People who suffer with the pains of gout should educate themselves about the drugs they may be taking. On one hand, medication can have some undesirable side effects, and on the other hand drugs taken for conditions such as high blood pressure can bring on the condition of gout. We send all our patients to WWW.DRUGDIGEST.COM where they can look up everything they consume from over the counter drugs, prescriptive drugs and vitamins and see if anything might be reacting with each other to cause the symptoms of gout or any other problems.

All foods listed here can be responsible for excessive uric acid production. They are; alcohol, anchovies, asparagus, cauliflower, mushrooms, consommé, herring, meat gravies, broth, bouillon, mussels, sardines, red meats, organ meats, hot dogs, luncheon meat, fried foods, roasted nuts, sugar products, dried fruits, fish, caffeine, beans, lentils, eggs, oatmeal, peas, poultry, yeast products, acetaminophen (Tylenol), and low doses of aspirin.

While under an attack of gout all of the above foods should be avoided as well as the following; artificial sweeteners, carbonated drinks, cigarettes, goat, lamb, pastries, pork, sugar, beer, deer, chocolate, coffee, custard, jellies, liquor, pasta, rabbit, semolina, all salt, black tea, turkey, wheat bread, white rice and vinegar.

Is there an alternative way to treat gout??? Yes there is. The best alternative is to eat cherries. Fresh, frozen, canned or liquefied seems to do the trick the best. Benjamin Franklin supposively ate strawberries to eliminate his attacks of gout. We recommend cranberry juice, crancherry juice and cranstrawberry juice. One can buy black cherry concentrate from the health food stores and mix it with water, or one can buy cherry lozenges, that seem to work also. Some people have told us that watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupes can help eliminate the attacks of gout. Tea made from the flowers of the Broom plant is another traditional folk remedy for gout. The Merck manual advises to drink at least 3 quarts of water a day, which will minimize the formation of kidney stones.

This brings us to our final question, What can the Chiropractor do for gout?? The Chiropractor by keeping the nervous system as free as possible of interference will help ensure the proper functioning of the liver and kidneys in removing the excessive uric acid and thus minimizing the formation of gout crystals in the joints and stones in the kidneys. Plus the chiropractor should be advising the patient about the foods listed above to avoid, and the foods to consume to remove the gout crystals and eliminate them from the body.

If there are any questions or if anyone wishes to make an appointment for a FREE CONSULTATION and EXAMINATION   please call Denise or I at 253-0904 or 775-6656.