What is Uric Acid?
Before showing you how to lower uric acid levels naturally, it’s important to understand what uric acid is, where it comes from, and why high levels can lead to gout…
Uric acid is a byproduct of the chemical breakdown of compounds called ‘purines’ that exist in our body’s cells and in our food. Purines are very important to us because they provide things like our energy and our protein that we all need. During this process, uric acid is produced in the bloodstream. Uric acid is good for us because it acts as an antioxidant and helps look after the internal linings of our blood vessels. It’s our kidneys’ job to process the uric acid produced and excrete waste out of our bodies via our urine, with a little amount via our stools.
What Causes High Uric Acid in Blood?
Although the kidneys usually maintain uric acid at healthy levels, there are times when they are unable to do this, resulting to excessive uric acid circulating in the blood.
Two of the main causes for high uric acid levels in blood are:
(1) The kidneys aren’t working to their full potential so that they are unable to process and expel sufficient uric acid quickly enough, or…
(2) There is too much uric acid being produced by the metabolizing purines for healthy kidneys to process. Whatever is the case, the result is high uric acid in the blood.
What is the Result of High Uric Acid Levels in the Human Body?
High uric acid levels in the bloodstream is a condition known as ‘hyperuricemia.’ Over time this can lead to the production of uric acid crystals which can settle in the joints, tendons and surrounding tissue. Now, these crystals are needle-like in shape and are looked upon as foreign objects by the body’s defenses. The body’s natural anti-inflammatory processes against these crystals cause symptoms such as redness, swelling, heat, inflammation, stiffness and very great pain. These are the symptoms of a gout attack. In other words, high uric acid levels in the human body can lead to gout.
How to Lower Uric Acid Levels Naturally?
The obvious answer to this is to avoid foods high in uric acid and switch to a low purine diet, as discussed below. However, more and more gout sufferers are also moving away from costly drug-based remedies with their nasty side effects, to more natural remedies. Here are 3 simple tips on how to lower uric acid levels in the blood naturally:
(1) Drink between 2 and 3 liters of water everyday. Drink small amounts regularly throughout the day. Water helps the kidneys to process and flush uric acid out of the body.
(2) Consume a baking soda solution to help dissolve uric acid crystals, and, increase uric acid solubility. Add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda to 8 oz of water. Mix thoroughly, and drink maximum 8 glasses daily. One before bedtime, one when you get up in the morning, and one every 2 to 4 hours between meals. Repeat until the symptoms have gone.
Note: Since baking soda is high in sodium, change to a salt-free diet whilst taking this remedy. And, if you suffer from high blood pressure, although you can take it as long as you monitor your blood pressure closely, it’s better not to use this remedy at all.
(3) Avoid foods high in uric acid – change to a low purine diet. Since uric acid comes from the breakdown of purines, and, purines also exist in our foods, a gout sufferer needs to select food that is relatively low in purines. This means avoiding high purine foods completely.
The general types of foods high in uric acid are:
- Fatty red meats – veal, bacon, mutton
- Poultry – turkey, goose
- Some seafood – mussels, herring, smelt, sardines, trout, scallops
- Alcohol – Beer, in particular, is a trigger for gout
- Sweetbreads and internal organs
The types of foods that make up a low purine diet are things like; essential fatty acids (e.g. tuna, salmon, etc.), low-fat dairy products, complex carbohydrates (e.g. bread, cereal, pasta, rice, vegetables, fruit, etc.), fruits such as cherries, strawberries, blueberries, grapes, etc.
Final note: As always with natural remedies, first consult your doctor for professional guidance on their suitability to your individual case.
Dangers of Recurring Gout
Many folks are unaware that not dealing with their gout in a proper manner can be very damaging. By ‘dealing in a proper manner,’ I mean doing all they can to prevent their gout from coming back. You see, frequently recurring gout can lead to many health issues, such as permanent / serious joint damage and kidney problems like painful kidney stones. And, making matters worse is that, a person who experiences just one gout attack, now has a much higher chance of further attacks. In fact, it’s almost certain unless they take proper measures to prevent recurring gout.
So, as a gout sufferer, you need to, not only eliminate gout symptoms during an attack, but start on a regimen to prevent gout recurrence.
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