Often, our introduction to gout comes when we wake up with a big toe that hurts more than we thought a toe could hurt. Shoes aren’t going to happen and neither is walking. That toe has taken control of our every thought and action.
What is this mess about?
Our bodies create uric acid as a waste product of digestion. It usually slips quietly into our kidneys, then out of our bodies in our urine.
When levels get high, though, uric acid forms crystals that get in our joints. We can feel pretty achy. But when it lands in its favorite spot–our big toe–”pretty achy” doesn’t even begin to tell the story. We’re talking misery of the highest order. It’s gout.
So what causes this terrible visitation?
Well, doctors will tell you it’s too much alcohol, too much caffeine or too much meat, especially organ meat. Truth to tell, I don’t think so. Maybe the alcohol, since our bodies see it as a poison. But the talk about caffeine and meat is probably more of a medical knee-jerk reaction just to have something to say.
They may tell you gout comes from hypothyroidism, and since low thyroid can cause just about any problem known to mankind, they could be right.
And they may reluctantly tell you the low-dose aspirin or diuretic they ordered can cause gout. Then they’ll tell you to stay the course on the aspirin and diuretic, but add another medicine for gout. Well, that’s another story for another time, but it’s not much of a plan.
Here’s what they won’t tell you, perhaps because they don’t know. High fructose corn syrup raises uric acid levels like nobody’s business.
If you have a family history full of gout, or if you’ve had gout before, eating or drinking anything with high fructose corn syrup in it is asking–even begging–for trouble.
Take care of business and get rid of high fructose corn syrup. It’s everywhere, so avoiding it takes effort. If you don’t care to make that effort, don’t even tell me about your toe.
As my mother used to say, “It serves you right!”
Okay. Enough with the tough love. What do you do to get rid of gout?
Eat red cherries or drink red cherry juice. Without sugar, and certainly without high fructose corn syrup.
Doctors have medicine for gout, but the cherries work just as well.
Once your toe crisis is over, don’t volunteer to go back there. One time around the toe-on-fire track really ought to be enough, don’t you think?
Especially since constantly high uric acid levels can lead to kidney disease.
It’s no fun at all for the liver, either.
What to do? Besides avoiding high fructose corn syrup, drink plenty of water from a reverse osmosis system. RO systems get rid of the toxins, hormones, medications, fluoride and chlorine in our water–all of which put your health in a state of susceptibility.
Also, get on a good vitamin/mineral program. You’ll give your body the support it needs, and gout doesn’t visit anybody nutritionally armed and dangerous.
A lot of people yoo-hoo nutritional supplements, but if your body needs energy, spunk and the strength to fight disease, that’s where you’ll find it. Those babies gave me my life back.
Or maybe you enjoy pain and misery?
A drunk driver damaged Bette Dowdell's pituitary gland shortly before her first birthday. Although doctors insisted for years that she was fine, her health drifted to a crash-and-burn event, and she realized her health was up to her.
Now she's happy to report she has energy all day, every day. She sleeps well. Colds, flu and headaches are all in the past. Optimism moved back in. Life is good.
Now Bette's sharing what she knows with others to help them take control of their health, too. People who become their own health advocate enjoy far better health than those that don't.
Bette grew up in The Salvation Army, where her parents were officers. Like the military, this Army life involved a lot of moving, and she attended ten schools, in nine cities, in three states before graduating from high school.
After college, Bette worked as an IBM Systems engineer, a small-company consultant and software company owner. She wrote the books How to be a Christian Without Being Annoying, On We March: A memoir of growing up in The Salvation Army and the e-book Pep For The Pooped: Discovering the Vitamins and Minerals Your Body Is Starving For.
She lives in the Phoenix area.