Diet Can Help Control Gout Attacks
By Carol Eustice, About.com Guide
Updated July 22, 2011
About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board
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Gout Foods: Avoiding Purines
Gout is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. Uric acid results from the breakdown of purines. Purines are part of all human tissue and found in many foods. The excess can be caused by either an over-production of uric acid by the body or the under-elimination of uric acid by the kidneys. Also, the ingestion of foods high in purines can raise uric acid levels in the blood and precipitate gout attacks in some people.
Considered one of the most painful of the rheumatic conditions, gout afflicts an estimated 840 out of 100,000 people, accounting for about 5 percent of all cases of arthritis. Usually, gout affects the joints in the big toe initially. It also can affect the instep, ankles, heels, knees, wrists, fingers, or elbows. The definitive diagnosis for gout depends on finding uric acid crystals in the joint fluid during an acute gout attack.
Along with specific prescribed medications, it is typically recommended that people with gout reduce their intake of purine-rich foods. That dietary recommendation begs the question regarding what foods are purine-rich? Consider though that purines are found in all protein foods... [continues]
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