What is gout? Gout is a type of arthritis that causes very painful swelling in one or more joints. It typically affects the big toe joint, but it can also cause painful inflammation in other joints such as the elbows, knees, wrist or fingers. Thankfully, although gout is a very painful condition, it is possible to beat gout by eating citrus fruit.
What causes gout?
The painful symptoms of gout are caused by a build up of uric acid crystals. Uric acid is a by-product of the breakdown of purines, a type of protein found in various foods, including shellfish, offal, and red meat. If levels of uric acid are too high, the kidneys are unable to excrete the excess and uric acid crystals accumulate in the joints, causing inflammation and painful swelling.
There are many reasons why people suffer from gout. In some cases, gout is caused by a protein rich diet: eating too much shellfish, red meat and other rich foods is a known risk factor for gout. It can also be caused by a heavy consumption of yeast rich products such as beer and red wine. But apart from lifestyle factors, gout is also a side effect of certain health problems including kidney disease, diabetes, and obesity.
Can natural remedies be used to treat gout?
There are lots of natural remedies that can help the sufferer find relief from the painful symptoms of gout. Vitamin C is a well-known natural remedy for gout and many studies have indicated that taking a vitamin C supplement regularly can help to prevent a recurrence of gout attacks. If you are already suffering with gout, vitamin C can also help to alleviate the symptoms.
Can citrus fruits help alleviate the symptoms of gout?
Citrus fruits are a natural source of vitamin C, so including plenty of citrus fruits in your diet can also help you find relief during an attack of gout. Try eating oranges, clementines, satsumas and tangerines. Alternatively, infuse slices of lemon and lime in a glass of hot water twice per day or drink some freshly squeezed orange juice.
How does citrus fruit help you to beat gout?
Citrus fruits contain high levels of citric acid. Scientific studies have shown that citric acid can help to dissolve uric acid, so consuming plenty of citrus fruit can reduce your levels of citric acid and provide you with fast relief from the symptoms of gout. If eaten regularly, it can also help to keep your residual levels of uric acid in the blood lower, which will prevent frequent attacks of gout.
Although gout is a painful and debilitating condition, it does not have to ruin your life. Avoid the foods known to increase your risk of developing gout and eat plenty of vitamin C rich citrus fruit: this will help you to avoid future bouts of gout. You should also try to maintain a healthy diet, avoid too much beer and red wine, and take regular exercise, as these factors all play a part in causing painful attacks of gout.