I have gout. And my first gout attack was a very painful introduction to a state that is more frequent than most people think. It completely blindsided me. I had no idea that my diet (and a small number of other factors) had been putting me at risk for gout. Who knows how long this disease had been stalking me ready to strike. I have since learned that a diet loaded with foods high in purines can cause and aggravate gouty arthritis (gout is a form of arthritis).
These people are always concerned about when they receive their next attack of gout. What can these sufferers of gout do to manage it correctly? If you have had gout before, then you begin to achieve the first signs of an attack of gout are coming.
I was on vacation with my wife and we were staying at a hotel in Denver, Co. We were having a good time and splurging; a night on the town (a few beers), prime rib, a nice meal (shrimp cocktail, and creamed spinach), we were having a great time (a few more beers).
Hot Topic: Gout Boy
Seafood: Although the shrimp I had the night before my attack was undeniably a factor because all shellfish have high purines, shrimp isn’t the worst offender. Some other fish have even higher amounts of purines-anchovies, sardines, smelt, and mussels are only a few. Back off the seafood if you have gout.
Red Meat: I had a vast slab of prime rib the night before my attack. It was delicious, but red meat is high in purines, so it was a contributing factor to my gout attack. Liver, organ meats, gravies, and sweetbreads are some other foods that are in this high purine category.
Alcohol: Beer is a big No No if you have gout. This pisses me off (because I love it). I had probably 8-10 beers the night before my gout attack. All alcoholic drinks can aggravate gout. However, beer is especially bad as it has large amounts of brewers yeast and yeast is either of the highest purine containing foods there is. If you have gout, just moderate your drinking and you ought to be ok.
Some veggies are high in purines: Spinach is one of them. I did have spinach the night before my attack (culminating in my perfect storm for a gout attack). Some other high purine vegetables are asparagus, cauliflower, mushrooms, kidney and lima beans. Please note that these are only moderately high in purines and most likely won’t be a problem to gout sufferers in moderation. Most vegetables are actually very low in purines.
Ok the dietary breakdown of my “night before" is completed. But there are some other things I was taking that absolutely contributed to my gout attack. Remember I said I would explain about aspirin? Well, aspirin, too, is a contributing factor for gout when taken in high amounts. Aspirin increases the amount of uric acid in the main body and uric acid crystals in the joints of the organization is what causes gout. I was taking probably 8-10 aspirin/day before my gout attack, I have since changed over to ibuprophen. Low dose aspirin in most cases won’t aggravate gout.
And last, but not least, I have high blood pressure, am overweight, and in my 50’s. I was taking a high blood pressure medication which contained a diuretic. Diuretics have been demonstrated to be associated with gout because they can likewise increase the uric acids levels in the system. Although not the main perpetrator in most gout attacks, diuretics can be a contributing factor.
Over the years I have learned a great deal about what causes gout, the proper diet to decrease my chances of having a gout attack, and ways to live with this painful disease. At the time of this writing it has been nearly 3 years since I have had an attack of gout and I give credit in large measure to a proper diet. If you have gout and want to lessen your attacks then you should also learn how your diet can be set to eliminate gout from your life. Believe me, it’s a lot less painful to change your diet for gout, than to suffer with gout.