• Gout Foot Pain: Thanksgiving Foods to Avoid

    by Dr. LaMour
    on Nov 18th, 2014

Did you know that many of your favorite Thanksgiving foods can trigger painful gout symptoms in your feet? Gout is usually experienced as a throbbing pain in the joints, and especially in the big toe. Gout develops when excess uric acid in your body causes small crystals to form around joints like the ones in your toes. Your body produces uric acid when it breaks down purines – compounds that are naturally found in certain foods. Unfortunately, many of our favorite Thanksgiving foods are high in purines. But with these simple tips on what foods to avoid, you can keep your stomach from getting your feet into trouble this turkey day. 

Organ meats, fatty fish and shellfish

All meat, poultry and fish contain purines, but certain animal proteins have even more than others. To lower your risk of a gout attack, stay away from organ meats (e.g., turkey giblets or gizzards), and fatty fish and shellfish (e.g., tuna, shrimp, lobster and scallops). You should also limit your intake of any animal protein to 4 to 6 ounces per day. That means you’ll need to keep your serving of turkey small, and load up your plate with colorful veggies and sides instead.

Rich sauces

Cream-based or high-fat sauces – like gravies that use the fats or drippings from cooked meats can also trigger gout. The excess fat in these decadent sauces reduces your body’s ability to get rid of excess uric acid. Try making creamy sauces with low-fat or fat-free dairy products to cut back on fat. Lower fat broths and vegetable-based sauces can also provide a tasty gout-friendly alternative to traditional heavy sauces.

Fructose-sweetened foods and drinks

Fructose is the only carbohydrate known to increase the production of uric acid. This Thanksgiving, skip beverages (e.g., sodas, juices) that have been sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup, and opt for those that contain cane sugar, molasses or other sweeteners. Fructose also occurs naturally in orange juice, but other unsweetened fruit juices may be a good alternative.

Alcoholic beverages

Completely avoiding alcohol during the Thanksgiving holiday may be very difficult – after all, it’s a festive time of year! But for gout sufferers, certain alcoholic beverages are more likely to trigger a painful episode. It’s best to avoid beer and champagne, since both of these drinks are known for causing gout attacks. Red wine is recommended, since it has been shown to reduce purine levels in the body over time. Still, you should be careful to limit yourself to 1 or 2 glasses of wine. If you do drink, try to have a glass of water or more between drinks. This can also help you stay feeling full, so you aren’t tempted to overeat.

In addition to avoiding these gout-causing foods and drinks this Thanksgiving, it’s important for you to stay hydrated. Remember to drink enough water and consider adding a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice to each glass. Tart cherry juice is also recommended, as some studies have shown that it can help prevent gout symptoms from flaring up.

Regular foot checkups are also important in managing gout. If you’re overdue for a visit, schedule an appointment with us today!

Original Source: http://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-diseases/thanksgiving-foods-to-avoid-gout-foot-pain/

Author Dr. LaMour

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