Gout is an extremely painful inflammation or swelling of an area due to the body’s inability to break down and efficiently eliminate uric acid. It is hard to determine the root cause of a gout attack since it can triggered by a variety of different factors such as: diet, stress, lack of exercise, weight, medication, or kidney function. While it is difficult to determine the cause, it is easy to pinpoint that the most common area affected by gout is the big toe. Gout can be debilitating for the person afflicted and a bout can last anywhere from a couple of hours to a few days. Therefore, it is important that as soon as a bout begins sufferers immediately implement a course of natural remedies for gout. Natural remedies are beneficial simply for the fact that they are easy to administer and the items needed are ones that most people already have in their homes.
Of course the most straightforward of the natural remedies for gout is a cold compress. Also, keeping the area where the gout attack has occurred, such as the foot or hand, elevated may be beneficial. Elevation in conjunction with a cold compress may help to relieve the swelling. While most people suffering with gout will be tempted to take painkillers, it is advised to take painkillers containing ibuprofen rather than aspirin since it can actually worsen symptoms.
Fresh fruits and fruit juices can be one of the most valuable ways of fighting gout. Really any fruit will offer some benefit in relieving or preventing gout. The potassium in bananas is great for gout sufferers. A deficiency in potassium can be one cause of a gout attack since potassium aids in breaking down uric acid crystals. Fresh black cherries or a concentrated juice has been proven to be one of the most effective natural remedies for gout. Black cherries not only contain compounds that break down uric acid crystals, but they also act as an anti-inflammatory and a tissue repairer. Sufferers will need to consume up to 30 cherries a day in order for the relief to take effect. Lemon or lime juice is another fruit that aids in breaking down crystals. If the juice is too sour to drink you can dilute it with water, however it is not advised to add any sugar to the juice since sugar can aggravate gout. To get the most juice out of the fruit simply put the whole lime or lemon in the microwave for about 10-20 seconds before squeezing.
While foods such as bananas and cherries can really help fight gout, there are also many foods that can actually prompt gout to flare up. These foods are called high purine foods because they actually cause a build up of uric acid in the body. Rich foods such as ice cream, cakes, or gravies as well as fried foods are all guilty of causing gout. It is important to be aware that excess consumption of seafood or red meat can also be unhealthy for those prone to gout. Believe it or not, even certain vegetables can cause a flare up. So mushrooms, peas, lentils, asparagus, and cauliflower should all be consumed in moderation. Of course, items containing caffeine or alcohol are also harmful.
While maintaining a healthy balanced diet and drinking lots of water is important it is also essential to begin an exercise regime. Exercise will help strengthen the joints and muscles and improve circulation in the body. People that are overweight are prone to bouts of gout therefore, beginning an exercise program may help shed some of that extra weight and reduce future attacks.
Armed with the knowledge of wide array of natural remedies for gout available may be the best way of fighting this problem. It is important for each person to test and record the results of which remedies work best in their situation. A person putting these natural remedies into practice at the first signs of a flare up may be pain free and back on their feet much sooner than before.