Foods to Avoid With Gout Flare up

Foods to Avoid With Gout Flare up

Gout is actually one of the most controllable forms of arthritis as long as you follow medical advice and a diet to lower uric acid levels.

In this article we will be taking a look at foods to avoid with gout flare up, but what exactly is gout???

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What is Gout?

Gout is is a type of arthritis that creates high levels of pain and inflammation within one or more joints. It is brought on by a chemical in the blood, called uric acid.

Uric acid itself really isn’t that harmless and is constructed inside your body, it is usually released through urine and stools.

Unfortunately gout sufferers see a build up of uric acid within their blood that leads to tiny grit-like crystals forming.

These uric acid-based crystals tend to hang on to joints and irritate the tissues. This then leads to inflammation, pain and quite severe swelling.

So why do certain people see a build up of uric acid in their bodies?

This is usually down to the fact that their kidneys do not pass out enough uric acid and the blood level may rise. But there can be other reasons behind your build up of this acid…

  • Like a drink or two? Too much alcohol can bring on high levels of uric acid.
  • Levels also rise when there is not enough vitamin C in your system.
  • Fancy a can of 7-Up or Coke? These fizzy drinks contain high levels of fructose which is also known to raise levels of uric acid.
  • Water tablets, or diuretics, can be behind the rise in uric acid. Aspirin is also know to have a similar effect on the body.

The Foods to avoid with a Gout Flare up…

If you are currently suffering with gout, these are the foods you should be thinking about putting in your shopping trolly…

  1. Skimmed milk
  2. Dairy products that are known to be low fat (cottage cheese, yogurt etc.)
  3. Foods which are listed as ‘whole grain products’ or made with ‘whole wheat flour’
  4. Plant oils and vegetables
  5. Coffee
  6. Cherries
  7. Various forms of vitamin C (those simple supplements of 500g work wonders!)
  8. Six packs of bottled mineral water (plenty of water in your diet at all times!)

And these are the foods you should really consider staying away from…

  1. Organ meats and red meats like liver, heart or tongue
  2. Shellfish
  3. Refined carbohydrate-based foods (various brands of white bread, rice or sugar)
  4. ALL processed foods (easier said than done – I know!)
  5. Fizzy drinks like soda
  6. Alcoholic drinks – the one we all struggle with 🙂

During a Flare up

Don’t forget that during a pain-ridden gout flare up, it’s important to protect your joints. This means as much rest as possible and try your best to stay off your feet.

Try keeping the effected foot elevated with a couple of pillows beneath it and wrap with an ice pack for 20 to 30 minutes at a time (3 to 4 times a day if possible!).

If you don’t mind the loss of ‘street cred’ – use a cane when walking outdoors. 

Fabric can sometimes feel like a stone against a gout-infected foot so consider cutting a couple of toes out of your sock. It’s also a good idea to leave that foot outside of the blanket when you sleep at night!

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8 thoughts on “Foods to Avoid With Gout Flare up

  1. I’m so glad I have come across your website explaining gout and how to remedy this problem.

    My Mums partner has started suffering quite bad with gout and is looking how to remedy his pain. I will forward this web page to him.

    Thanks for relaying the info regarding what food to cut out to help ease gout as this will be beneficial to him.
    I had no idea the problems are associated with the buildup of uric acid leading to the kidneys not passing this acid out and causing high blood levels to rise.

    He’ll be glad to read the likes of skimmed milk, dairy products and coffee etc are ok as he is a huge fan however I have read you suggest cutting shellfish out but he is a huge fish fan, should this be cut out too or is fish ok?

    Thanks again for your help,

    1. Hi Simon – this is really great news!

      We actually received a few requests for an article covering the subject of gout and food….which is why we opted to publish this piece. It’s great to hear that it has helped someone already! 🙂

  2. My ex-husband suffered with gout in his foot repeatedly.  I sure wish the internet was around back then, but of course the doctor didn’t do anything but tell him to avoid calcium foods like dairy.  Nothing else.  Now that my cousin is experiencing the same thing, I can research here online and give him some solid advice.  His doctor really didn’t tell him anything dietary either.  What is with these doctors?  Don’t they realize the link between what you put in your mouth and what happens to your body?  It always amazes me that they reach for the BigPharma first always.

    Anyway, I’m going to link him to your article so he can change his eating habits.  I just wanted to pop in and thank you for another great article, I really appreciate it.

    1. Hi Babsie, 

      I’ve also noticed that certain medical professionals don’t really make the link between health and the food you put in your body – they also don’t recognise natural choices instead of meds. 

  3. Both my parents did suffer from Gout at least twice when I was a kid and I hear them saying that foods, in their case, was to blame for.

    However, when I grew up I became an RN and I knew then that food alone wasn’t the case. This was the time when the people of this time liked to drink on a regular basis, not to get drunk all the time, but to drink alcohol to Lunch and with Supper.

    After they had their second attack with Gout they must have changed quite a bit in their diet and social drinking because it never came back.

    An overload on uric acid is certainly nothing to kidding about and as I said the individual who has to go through it is really suffering.

    Thanks for this article great information!

  4. My understanding is that gout quite often occurs when people have other medical conditions. As you know, different medical conditions can mean that certain recommendations, while recommended for people with gout may not be recommended for individuals who have a specific medical condition as well as gout. I notice that the recommendation to stay away from coke (the soft fizzy drink) and the like is included for gout. Is this a total “ban”? 

    1. Well ‘ban’ is a rather strong word David, we only give recommendations here (as we are not medical professionals). You can drink fizzy drinks if you want, but don’t expect it to help the condition in any way (it can only make it worse!).

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