Diet for gout – why the right diet is important
Gout is a metabolic disease. Diet plays an important role and has a major impact on blood uric acid levels. Therefore, sufferers must follow a specific diet to avoid painful gout attacks and joint damage.
- Gout causes too much uric acid to build up in the blood.
- Uric acid crystals form from the uric acid, which is then deposited in the joints, but also in the kidneys, bursae, tendons, the skin, and the ear cartilage. In joints, this deposit often leads to inflammation, combined with severe pain attacks.
- The metatarsophalangeal joint of the big toe is usually affected first when a gout attack occurs for the first time. Incidentally, this is usually the case after a lavish and greasy meal.
These foods will help prevent gout attacks
Uric acid is formed in the body when purines are broken down.
- Purines are substances in food that the body needs. However, if the uric acid produced during degradation is not sufficiently excreted via the kidneys, the intake of purines must be reduced in order to keep the uric acid level in the blood at a normal level.
- Some of the purines in the body are not absorbed through food. Since it is a cell-building block, purines are also released in the body when cells are broken down or decayed.
- It is therefore important to reduce the purine intake from food. Offal, meat, and sausage contain a particularly large amount of purine.
- In nutrient tables, not purines, but the urea content of food is given. After that, gout patients can address themselves. As a rule of thumb, if you have gout, you should be consuming no more than 500 mg of uric acid per day and no more than 3000 mg per week. In the event of an acute gout attack, the permitted amount is additionally reduced.
- You should therefore completely avoid offal and only use meat to a limited extent. This also applies to some legumes such as peas, lentils, and kidney beans and certain types of fish such as anchovies or sardines. Yeast is also a purine-rich food.
- You should also be sparing with fat. Steaming or grilling are suitable low-fat preparation methods. How to fry without fat, we show in another article.
- Milk and milk products as well as eggs as a source of protein are favorable for the diet in gout. Fruit, vegetables, salads, and potatoes should also be on your menu. However, there are exceptions here too: Brussels sprouts and spinach contain a comparatively large amount of purine.
- Foods high in vitamin C have a positive effect on gout, as the vitamin has a slightly uric acid-lowering effect.
- Also important for gout: drink a lot. You should drink two to three liters of liquid a day, preferably in the form of water or unsweetened tea.
- You should avoid alcohol altogether, as it increases uric acid levels. Incidentally, beer is particularly unfavorable due to its purine content.