3. Limit Certain Seafood
Certain kinds of seafood are bad for gout while others are good for the reason that they contain omega-3 fatty acids which help fight inflammation.
Fatty fish that’s good for gout include but whatever you do, do not eat any seafood like salmon, smelt, shad, herring, bass, and tilapia.
4. Limit Sugar Intake
Cut out all artificial sugars from your diet including those found in sugary drinks like sodas, fruit juices, and energy juices. The worst culprit of all is high fructose corn syrup which is a common ingredient found in many of today’s junk food.
In some cases, they even use this ingredient in meals and snacks that are marketed as “healthy.” Read the label and watch out for sugars especially HFCS. If you must sweeten your meal or drink, opt for natural sugars like maple syrup, stevia, or honey.
5. Avoid Junk Food and Processed Food
Junk food and processed food are filled with sugar and salt which are all bad for gout. Also, they increase the free radicals in your body which can lead to a host of diseases. Quit junk food for a month. You’ll find yourself craving for natural foods when you’re not addicted to processed food anymore.
6. Some Purine-Rich Vegetables Are Okay
Certain vegetables have high purines but are okay to eat since they don’t impact uric acid levels. This includes peas, beans, lentils, asparagus, spinach, oats, cauliflower, broccoli, and mushrooms.
7. Use Olive Oil
Most oils used for cooking are generally bad for your health. Replace them with extra virgin olive oil, which, when heated, will not lose its benefits.
8. Be Careful With Caffeine
Most gout sufferers have no problems drinking coffee and other caffeinated beverages, but some have experienced a gout attack after increasing their intake of the drink. Tread carefully with caffeine and drink only when necessary.
9. Avoid Beer and Liquor
Alcohol, especially beer which is high in purines, is a big no-no for gout. Certain alcoholic beverages are also not good for gout sufferers. This includes whiskey, gin, vodka, and rum. Avoid these drinks as much as possible and opt for wine. Wine does not trigger gout, but then again, you shouldn’t overindulge on it either.
If you must drink beer, opt for the locally-made organic ones. Most mainstream beers are laced with GMOs and high fructose corn syrup which can be very harmful to gout.
10. Eat Organic
Eating natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and nuts are generally good for gout. You want to buy these items at your local market where they’re more likely to be fresh and organic.
Because we are all different, some of the tips I shared with regards to diet for gout may or may not work for you. The most important thing is that you do your own research and find out what works for you. Keep track of the food you’re eating and identify which foods lead to your gout attacks.
Lifestyle Changes for Gout
While taking prescription medications and diet are all part of treating your gout, lifestyle changes can also have a positive impact on gout. Below are some suggested lifestyle changes.
1. Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking lots of water should be a consistent habit. It helps flush out the toxins from your body including the crystals that are causing your gout. When you’re not hydrated enough, your uric acid tends to rise. So try to maintain a fluid intake of around 2 to 4 liters a day.
2. Lose That Excess Weight
Check your BMI and keep it somewhere between 18.5 to 24.9. If it’s beyond that, you could be overweight. If your BMI is 30.0 or higher, that means you are obese in which case, and you need to make an effort to lose weight.
Not only is that extra weight an added burden on your joints, but it’s also a risk factor for developing gout. This is because most people who are overweight or obese tend to have higher than usual uric acid levels.
3. Exercise Regularly
This is in conjunction with tip #2. In addition to following a strict gout diet, you should also be exercising regularly. They both contribute to helping you lose weight and keeping those joints healthy. Even if it’s just walking or doing chores around the house.
However, if you have a gout attack, you shouldn’t be exercising. Wait until the pain goes away and your joint is functioning normally again before engaging in any physical activity.