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How to Relieve Gout Pain Naturally

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How to Relieve Gout Pain Naturally

What is gout?

Gout is a common form of arthritis, especially in men.[1] This condition occurs when uric acid accumulates in the blood (hyperuricemia) and crystallizes. These crystals deposit in and around joints.


Symptoms of gout

When uric acid crystallizes, it causes sharp, stabbing pain in the affected joint. Gout causes sudden attacks of pain and inflammation, often affecting the joint at the base of the big toe.


What causes gout?

Uric acid is formed from the breakdown of purines, which are chemicals found in certain foods. Many foods contain purines and gout symptoms are often linked to dietary choices. Rich foods and alcohol are the main culprits, though gout symptoms can also be brought on by stress, certain medications, crash dieting, dehydration, or joint injury.[2]


Foods to avoid when you have gout

You can reduce your risk of gout attacks by staying hydrated, limiting alcohol, and reducing foods high in purines such as the following:

  • Fish such as anchovies, sardines, mackerel, herring, codfish, trout, and haddock

  • Seafood such as shellfish, scallops, and mussels

  • Meats such as bacon, turkey, veal, and venison

  • Organ meats such as liver, kidney, brain and sweetbread

  • Alcoholic beverages


Foods that improve gout symptoms

If you are prone to a gout attack, fruit should be consumed in moderation as the sugar content can worsen a flare.[3] However, some fruits, especially cherries,[4,5] strawberries,[6] and pomegranates,[6] may be helpful in reducing inflammation.


Supplements to support gout

Omega-3 fatty acids: low levels of omega-3 have been associated with gout flares,[7] and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) within omega-3 fatty acids limits the production of proinflammatory leukotrienes, inflammatory mediators and tissue damage in gout.[8] Higher strength omega-3s have been shown to ease pain in other types of arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis.[9]

Folic acid: inhibits the enzyme that produces uric acid.[8] It can be found within B complex formulas or may be taken on its own.

Bromelain: is an enzyme from pineapple that may be helpful for minor pain, swelling, and inflammation relief.[10] Take between meals for the anti-inflammatory effect.

Quercetin: is a source of antioxidants,[11] protects capillaries,[11] inhibits the enzyme that produces uric acid,[8] and may decrease inflammation in gout.[12] Take between meals.

Turmeric: may help decrease inflammation in gout[13] and one of its components, curcumin, can help arthritis-related joint pain.[14]

Joyce Johnson ND (Inactive)

Joyce Johnson ND (Inactive)

Dr. Joyce Johnson is a licensed Naturopathic Doctor and natural health and lifestyle expert with 18 years of experience in the natural medicine field.

  1. Robinson PC. Gout - An update of aetiology, genetics, co-morbidities and management. Maturitas. 2018; 118:67-73.
  2. Merck. Gout - Musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders - MSD Manual Professional Edition [Internet]. 2021 [cited 8 February 2021]. Available from: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/musculoskeletal-and-connective-tissue-disorders/crystal-induced-arthritides/gout?query=gout
  3. Nakagawa T, Lanaspa MA, Johnson RJ. The effects of fruit consumption in patients with hyperuricaemia or gout. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2019; 58(7):1133-41.
  4. Zhang Y, Neogi T, Chen C, et al. Cherry consumption and decreased risk of recurrent gout attacks. Arthritis Rheum. 2012; 64(12):4004-11.
  5. Collins MW, Saag KG, Singh JA. Is there a role for cherries in the management of gout? Ther Adv Musculoskelet Dis. 2019; 11:1759720X19847018.
  6. Adachi SI, Sasaki K, Kondo S, et al. Antihyperuricemic effect of urolithin A in cultured hepatocytes and model Mice. Molecules. 2020; 25(21):5136.
  7. Abhishek A, Valdes AM, Doherty M. Low omega-3 fatty acid levels associate with frequent gout attacks: a case control study. Ann Rheum Dis. 2016; 75(4):784-5.
  8. Pizzorno J, Murray M, Joiner-Bey H. Clinician’s Handbook of Natural Medicine. St. Louis, Missouri : Elsevier; 2016.
  9. Gioxari A, Kaliora AC, Marantidou F, et al. Intake of ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutrition. 2018; 45:114-24.e4.
  10. Health Canada. Ingredient Search [Internet]. Webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca. 2021 [cited 7 February 2021]. Available from: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=bromelain.stem.tige&lang=eng
  11. Health Canada. Ingredient Search [Internet]. Webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca. 2021 [cited 7 February 2021]. Available from: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=quercetin&lang=eng
  12. Huang J, Zhu M, Tao Y, et al. Therapeutic properties of quercetin on monosodium urate crystal-induced inflammation in rat. J Pharm Pharmacol. 2012; 64(8):1119-27.
  13. Chen B, Li H, Ou G, et al. Curcumin attenuates MSU crystal-induced inflammation by inhibiting the degradation of IκBα and blocking mitochondrial damage. Arthritis Res Ther. 2019; 21(1):193.
  14. Haroyan A, Mukuchyan V, Mkrtchyan N, et al. Efficacy and safety of curcumin and its combination with boswellic acid in osteoarthritis: a comparative, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2018; 18(1):7.

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