About Uric Acid and Your Body
Uric acid is a natural byproduct of your body’s natural functions. Sometimes, levels of this substance can get too high and lead to joint pain, gout, and other painful conditions.
What Is Uric Acid?
Uric acid is a waste product. Your body makes it by breaking down purines, substances found in the body, and specific foods. When your body breaks down the purine, it creates waste products called uric acid crystals.
There are two reasons for gout. Gout occurs by underexcretion of uric acid or overproduction of uric acid. If your body can’t eliminate the crystals, they build up in joints.
Several conditions can cause this buildup:
- Foods high in purine
- Excessive alcohol
- Kidney disease
- High blood pressure.
How Uric Acid Affects Foot Health
Gout is one of the most painful foot conditions. When uric acid crystals form around the foot’s joints, they cause swelling, stiffness, and intense pain. The most common joint is the big toe joint. Pain is usually so fierce walking or bending the joint is limited.
Gout is sometimes known as the “rich man’s disease” because it’s associated with a diet high in meat and alcohol. Symptoms, The most common presentation of gout in the foot is a joint that will be red hot and swollen. The pain is often so intense it even hurts if a sheet touches it.
Gout can mimic an infection, so if you think you have it go to your Podiatrist and get checked out.
How to Keep Uric Acid Levels Low
Diet is one of the best ways to control uric acid levels in your body. If you’re prone to gout or want to avoid it, the simplest and most effective approach is to change your diet. Stay away from high-purine foods, and eat more plant-based, nutrient-rich foods.
Foods to avoid:
- Red meat, including beef, pork, lamb, and game meat
- Organ meat
- Gravy made with organ meat
- Alcohol • High-purine seafood, including shrimp, sardines, and lobster
Foods to eat:
- Whole grains
- Low-fat dairy products
Natural Solutions for Uric Acid Buildup
In her book “Natural Solutions for Common Foot Problems,” Dr. Dawn Olsen Figlo shows how supplements can enhance the effects of your diet to help your kidneys work better and promote overall health. Here are some worth trying.
- Vitamin C: There is promising research about the role of vitamin C in reducing uric acid buildup. If you are prone to gout, consider taking vitamin C supplements or increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables that are high in vitamin C.
- Cherries: Sweet, delicious cherries help lower uric acid levels. You can eat them plain, make juice from them, or add them to your baked goods.
- Herbs and spices: Some plants that help balance uric acid levels are ginger, turmeric, dandelion, hibiscus, and milk thistle.
Keep Gout Away with a Holistic Approach
While medication may be necessary to manage painful, recurrent gout attacks, you can protect your feet with an integrated approach. Improve your diet, use plant-based supplements, and see a podiatrist for ongoing treatment. Download Dr. Dawn’s book for more tips on caring holistically