Some of you might have seen people having a big swelling either near the neck or in the joints around the leg and wondered how that is possible. Well. Those people are suffering from the disease called Gout.
What is gout
Gout is actually a type of arthritis that is caused by an inherited defect in the kidney’s ability to excrete uric acid. This waste product of protein metabolism comes both from the digestive process and from the normal turnover of cells.
Mistakenly, gout has had a persistent reputation for being the penalty for high living and overindulgence.
When deposits of uric acid crystals build up in the synovial fluid that surrounds the joints, the human body’s immune system attempts to eliminate these crystals through the process of inflammation; unfortunately, this causes attacks of intense pain that can continue for days or even weeks if the condition is left untreated. Over time, uric acid crystals accumulate in the form of lumpy deposits under the skin of the ears, the elbows and near the affected joints.
Gout attacks usually occur suddenly and unpredictably. Marked by swelling, inflammation and excruciating tenderness in the joints, gouts most commonly affects the joints at the base of the big toe, other foot joints, knees, ankles, wists and fingers. The slightest touch – even that of a bedsheet – may prove to be unbearably painful during an attack of gout.
Treatment for gouts
Thanks to the inventions and innovations in the medical technology, several drugs are now available that will stop the unbearable pain and also prevent any future attacks of gout. Colchicine, a drug derived from the autumn crocus flower, is one of the fastest acting and most effective drug for treating gouts. Unfortunately, this drug can cause severe nausea and diarrhea and on such reactions, one should immediately stop consuming that drug.
Dietary changes to manage gout
Though treatment is available for dealing with sudden attack of gout, it is advisable to make changes in your diet plan to deal with gouts effectively.
As obese people are more prone to gout attacks, losing weight – especially fat around the abdomen – often prevents future attacks. Weight loss should be gradual, however, because a rapid reduction can raise blood levels of uric acid and provoke gout. Fasting increases the blood level of uric acid. Therefore, people with gout should avoid skipping meals. High-protein, low-carbohydrate diets should be avoided since these diets encourage the formation of ketones, metabolic by-products that hamper the body’s ability to excrete uric acid.