Having gout means you always have to stay vigilant for potential gout triggers. This is because gout attacks can happen at any moment. The worst flares happen to patients at the most unexpected times and trust me, those who were prepared in advance were thankful they took the precautionary steps.
As a gout sufferer, you too will want to be ready. As much as possible, you need to prevent a flare from happening ever. Nothing is worse than being woken up to an inflamed toe that hurts so much even the slightest touch causes excruciating pain.
Here are some tips to help prevent gout attacks:
Follow a Low-Purine Diet
When purines are broken down in the body, they turn into uric acid. Too much of this uric acid building up in the joints is what causes those gout attacks. If you have gout, you need to take extra care with your diet making sure you limit your purine intake. Gout patients are often prescribed a low-purine diet consisting mostly of healthy carbs, fat, and little protein.
Why little protein? It’s because most protein sources are from meat which can be high in purines. However, it’s a totally different story when you’re consuming plant-based purines. You don’t have to worry as much when consuming these since the vitamins and nutrients found in these foods counteract the harmful effects of the purines.
If you find yourself reacting badly to a high-purine fruit or vegetable, you can eliminate it from your diet. People are different and one gout patient may be fine eating spinach while another finds that it triggers their flare. Find out what works for you and stick to it. It also helps to work with a dietician who can keep track of these things for you.
Some known trigger foods for gout include:
- Red meat
- Organ meats
- Shellfish like shrimp and lobster
- Refined grains
- Processed foods like chips, snacks, frozen dinners
- Sugary drinks
Cut these items out from your diet in order to prevent future gout attacks from happening.