Gout is a painful disease which can affect anyone although is most common in men, especially older men. Quite often after the overindulgences of the holiday season we notice an increase in the customers asking advice on treatment and prevention of gout.
Gout occurs with the crystallisation of uric acid in our joints, especially in the toes. This occurs when the uric acid level is elevated in the blood and there is either an overproduction of uric acid or an inefficiency in the elimination of uric acid from our body. Obviously relieving the chronic pain as well as prevention of future attacks is the main goal when we are treating gout. However, it’s also important to realise if left untreated, gout can lead to long term problems such as joint damage and maybe even kidney damage.
For some time, sufferers of gout have often been told to include cherries in their diet as a preventative for gout. I have often written about sour cherry juice concentrate for treatment of gout, arthritis and even insomnia. Sour cherry juice has been found to contain a compound known as anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is the pigment which gives cherries their bright red colour and is also believed to assist the body relieve inflammation and lower the uric acid levels in our blood.
Last year a new formula was released onto the market which we have found to be helpful for gout. This new formula contained sour cherry juice, as well as celery seed and white willow bark. The addition of these two new ingredients made this an even better formula.
Celery seeds have been known for years to be helpful for arthritis. In fact, when I first began in health foods 30 years ago, celery seed was pretty much the only supplement we sold for arthritis together with fish oil. Celery seeds have been found to contain compounds which may reduce uric acid levels. They also contain anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. In addition, celery seeds are thought to help stimulate the excretion process from the kidneys, thereby causing the kidneys to flush out excess uric acid crystals which of course build up in the joints.
White willow bark has been used for thousands of years to treat pain, fever, and gout. Interestingly in 1829, salicin, which is the active ingredient in white willow bark was found to be an effective treatment for pain. This discovery then led to the formulation of aspirin as a pain killer.
Clearly the best way to avoid gout is to prevent this elevation of uric acid. Taking your daily dose of sour cherry juice with celery seeds and white willow bark may assist with this however it is also important to look at a diet which is low in fats but also low in protein. More importantly foods containing high levels of purines need to be limited. Some of these foods would include beef, pork, bacon, lamb, organ meat and shellfish. Alcoholic beverages also need to be limited. Eating a dairy free, low-fat diet which is rich in vegetables and maintaining a healthy weight, plus exercising regularly is also important. It is also important to drink lots of water and stay hydrated.
I have once often written about green barley grass powder for treatment and prevention of arthritis and gout. Often, we find taking green barley grass in addition to the sour cherry juice can be very effective when suffering from a gout attack. Many customers continue to take this combination as a preventative although some will revert to only taking the sour cherry juice concentrate.
For further information on any health problem call to see Bev and the girls at Go Vita, Your Health Shop, at 5 North St, Batemans Bay, or phone 44729737.