What Is Gout?
Gout is a type of arthritis that develops due to build up of uric acid in the joints. Abnormally high levels of uric acid in the body lead to formation of uric acid crystals that deposit in the joints and surrounding tissues. This causes pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints. The symptoms typically have sudden onset which is known as gout attack. Gout most commonly affects the big toe, but may develop in any joint in the body. Also, it may affect one or multiple joints.
There are three main causes of gout. This includes excess production of uric acid, impaired kidney function and diet high in purine. Purine is a naturally occurring chemical in many foods. Uric acid is a result of purine break down in the body. In order to control levels of uric acid and relieve symptoms of gout, it is important to avoid the triggering foods.
Gout Diet Plan
The gout diet involves the intake of foods low in purine. Also, foods that help to decrease production of uric acid are also included into gout diet plan. Furthermore, treatment for gout may include weight control as obesity increases the risk of developing the condition.
Foods To Avoid
Foods with high purine content should be limited for people suffering from frequent gout arthritis attacks. This includes foods such as sardines, anchovies, herring, mackerel, scallops, meat, meat extracts, organ meat like brain, liver and kidney, beer and other alcoholic beverages, dried legumes, cauliflower, spinach, asparagus, mushrooms and brewers yeast products.
Foods To Eat
The gout diet should consist of foods that reduce or at least maintain uric acid levels in the blood. Low purine foods include strawberries, citrus fruits, pineapple, cherry juice, bread, yogurt, tofu, peanut butter, nuts, refined grains, low fat cheese, potatoes, pasta, rice, olives, chocolate, low fat dairy products, refined grains, gelatin, tea and coffee and soft drinks.
Meal Plans for Gout
The most important thing in the gout diet is to incorporate foods high in complex carbohydrates, low in fats and low in proteins. However, one should not eat the same foods low in purine every day but prepare meals of different foods. Here are recommendations for gout diet plan:
- 1 bowl of cereal
- Skim milk
- 2 slices of wholemeal toast
- 1 cup of tea or coffee
- Vegetable soup
- Boiled pulse
- 1 serving of plain rice (alternatively 1 sandwich)
- 1 bowl of buttermilk
- Veggie mixture
- Small chicken breast or a small fillet
- 1 serving of plain rice or whole wheat pasta
- 1 serving of fruit
- 2 plain biscuits