Gout is a form of arthritis that often first hits the big toe. It can also be seen in the foot, knee, wrist, ankle and hand.
Gout is caused by a chemical called uric acid, which forms urate crystals in the joints. This causes pain, swelling and inflammation. To alleviate these symptoms, you can take anti-inflammatory medications along with maintaining a healthy body weight.
However, you can simply avoid consuming certain foods to prevent gout. Following are 5 gout causing foods that you should stay away.
1. Red meat
Red meat is known for its high nutritional value with a bunch of minerals, protein and iron. However, it is also one of foods that trigger gout because of high amounts of purines. Purines are natural substances that increase uric acid levels. Therefore, eating large portions of red meat increase the risk of gout symptoms substantially. Foods with high concentrations of purines include beef, chicken, turkey, pork and venison. Organ meats such as kidney, liver or sweetbreads are especially bad for people who are suffering from gout. Additionally, processed meats like bacon, pepperoni and sausage also carry the high risk of causing gout.
2. Sugary drinks
Sugary drinks stimulate the body to produce more uric acid. So, regularly drinking beverages sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup is a major cause for gout. According to a study in 2010, women who had one soda per day had 74% higher risk of gout than those who had less than one soda per month. Especially, women who drank two sodas increased their risk 2.4 times.
Along with sugary drinks, alcoholic beverages can also trigger gout symptoms. Alcohol not only increases the uric acid level but also makes it difficult for your body to wipe out this substance. If you are suffering from gout, you should avoid beer, wine, malt liquors and more.
Yeast is packed with dense amounts of purines and may trigger gout attacks. Therefore, you need to stay away from foods with yeast on the ingredient list. Some products that contain yeast are pastries, cakes, breads, bagels, dinner rolls, hamburger and hotdog buns, pizza crust, crackers and baked goods.
5. Legumes and vegetables
Vegetables are generally good for you. However, legumes and vegetables such as mushrooms and spinach are among foods to avoid because they contain high levels of purines. Asparagus and cauliflower are especially higher in purines than other vegetables. Other examples of these include peas, rhubarb and lentils.