What are the Causes of Gout?
Until recent history, Gout was known as a disease of royalty, because most people who suffered from it were among the nobility. The poor people didn’t suffer from gout nearly as often.
Now we understand that this was caused due to the nobles eating a lot of meat, gravy and rich sauces, yet very few fruits and vegetables. The poor people ate the opposite diet, mostly fruits and vegetables but very little meat.
Henry VIII, Queen Anne, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander the Great, Isaac Newton and William Shakespeare all suffered from gout.
Gout is a very painful form of arthritis that was suffered by many famous people all over the world. It occurs when hyperuricemia sets in.
Hyperuricemia is the excess build up of uric acid in the body. It is caused by the disability of the kidney to excrete the excess uric acid.
This excessive build up of uric acid can lead to three conditions:
1. Deposition of sharp crystals of uric acid in joints, usually in the big toe.
2. Deposition of “tophi” under the skin or uric acid that resembles lumps.
3. Formation of uric acid crystal into kidney stones in the kidneys.
The folklore reason is that when you eat or drink too much, your body will succumb to gout sooner or later. Though there are no proven scientific studies that attest to this, too much alcohol intake is known to be one reason behind the likelihood of a person to develop this disease. The other causes of gout include:
If it runs in the blood, gout could most likely affect the descendants of a family plagued with gout. A person can inherit the inability of the body to process urate, which will lead to excessive build up of uric acid in the long run if left untreated.
Women are less likely to be affected with gout than men, until their later years. This is probably because women have more of the hormone estrogen, which is said to protect them from hyperuricemia. Women 40 years of age and older who are going through menopause will have a change in hormones. This can make them more prone to getting gout compared to younger individuals.
Obesity or being too overweight can also one of the causes of getting gout. This is because the more tissue, the more turnover or breakdown that can happen. And this can lead to again the overproduction of uric acid. One of the natural remedies for gout relief is to maintain a healthy body weight.
Crash diets are also suspected to make gout easy to develop. When one’s metabolism gets shocked because of the lack of calories, gout can set in. It is also because when one fasts, lactic acid can start to overproduce and lactic acid interferes with the kidney’s ability to process and excrete uric acid.
Certain medicines can make one prone or aggravate the occurrence of gout. These medicines that are considered precursors of gout include water pills or diuretics, aspirins, cyclosporine, levodopa, aminophylline, niacin and anti-TB medications.
Gout can also be a case of being a complication of another medical condition. These diseases that may tag along with gout include congestive heart failure, preeclampsia, leukemia, high blood pressure, diabetes, hypothyroidism, lymphoma and hemoglobin disorders.
The acute attack of gout is when a toe gets red, inflamed, painful and swollen to a point that even a bed sheet over it will make the pain worse.
Gout is diagnosed by inserting a needle into the joint and drawing a sample fluid that serves as the joint’s lubricant. Then, a microscope will be used to analyze whether the fluid has uric acid crystals or not.
The goal in gout treatments is to normalize the uric acid level of the blood. The medications usually prescribed are NSAIDs or non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and corticosteroids, which may either be taken orally or through injection into the affected joint.
If gout is left untreated, the joints may get damaged heavily and disability may happen. Often, it is the big toe or the knee that is affected with gout.
Gout plays a part in one of the most common kinds of arthritis, thus the moniker “gouty arthritis, it is also caused by the accumulation of uric acid in the arthritic joints. This is double trouble.
Preventing gout is still one of the best ways to deal with it. Avoid alcohol. The uric acid-laden gout foods to avoid include sardines, red meat, scallops, creamy and rich sauces like gravy, ice cream, and sweetbreads. Avoiding these items from the list of foods that cause gout will help in fighting the development of the disease.
On the other hand, a food you may want to add to an arthritis or gout treatment diet is cherries and cherry juice. Some doctors say to eat more cherries and drink more tart cherry juice. For some people, this fruit seems to act as one of the few natural remedies for gout. Only real fruit juice will do. Not some artificially cherry flavored corn syrup “drink.” Real cherry juice. More stores are stocking this juice now due to the demand from gout and arthritis sufferers.
It is also believed that drinking plenty of water, having regular physical activities, avoiding weight gain, and having a regular checkup with your physician will benefit you a lot, too, in fighting against gout and gouty arthritis.
After knowing all of this pertinent and valuable information, you are more armed to face this health challenge. Keeping yourself healthy should always be one of your lifelong priorities.
Causes of Gout
It is generally a case of getting abnormally high amounts of uric acid as produced by the liver. When one has gout, the normal symptom is having a painful, swollen and stiff joint caused by the deposits of crystal uric acids (scientifically known as monosodium urate monohydrate) in one’s joints. Who wants that?
Why does uric acid accumulate? That’s what needs to be expounded on with the help of this guide on what causes gout:
Food Rich in Uric Acid
One of the most popular culprit is eating too much food rich in uric acid or purines. Examples of these purine-laden food include, liver, beans, spices, rich and creamy sauces such as gravy and ice cream, poultry, sardines, scallops, anchovies and other shellfoods, sweet breads, coffee, and red meat.
There are so many foods that can cause gout or make it worse. It is helpful to know more about the Gout Diet and learn which foods to avoid and which foods are okay to eat if you are trying to prevent or get relief from gout.
It’s in the Genes
Genetics, as many diseases are accounted on, is also another known factor that causes gout. Studies say that an approximate of 18 percent develops gout if his or her family has that medical history.
Overweight people are also prone to getting gout in their body. The reason is that being overweight means having more tissue available for breakdown or turnover. And this leads to excessive production of uric acid. Vegetables are far less fattening than meat and gravy, so you get a double benefit by changing your eating habits to include more plant foods and less meat. You avoid uric acid and you keep your weight down.
A lead-induced case of gout was prevalent in Rome, where vessels used in eating or drinking were known to be leaded.
Crash Diets can Crash Your Uric Acid Metabolism, TooDiets that restrict calorie can catch one’s metabolism off guard and lead to gout. Fasting can cause the production of increased level of lactic acid. This lactic acid gets in the way of kidneys’ excretion of uric acid. The use of diuretics, also known as “water pills”, of some dieters causes the potassium level of the body to go down, which also leads to gout.
Poor Function of the Kidneys
It’s just a natural consequence that when the kidney starts to fail to excrete uric acid from the body, one’s uric acid levels will rise, right? What causes the kidneys to malfunction is the important question. Excessive alcohol intake is the problem. The main reason is that alcohol interferes with the kidney’s method of removing uric acid. Primary gout or the most common form of gout is usually what precipitates from this cause of gout attack.
Your doctor may ask you to give up drinking beer or other alcohol. And he or she may suggest trying a detox program of drinking super green food drinks. These come in many types and usually include barley grass, wheat grass, spirulina, etc.
Medicines that Worsen or Cause Gout
Certain types of medications can trigger gout, such as low dose salicylates or aspirins, niacin, thiazide diuretics, cyclosporine, aminophylline, levodopa and anti-tuberculosis medicines.
Gout as a Complication of Another Medical Condition
Diseases or some forms of medical conditions can also cause gout. These include hemoglobin disorders, congestive heart failure, leukemia, preeclampsia, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, diabetes and lymphoma. Secondary gout is the kind of arthritis that is known to have come from these medical conditions.
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