It is widely known drinking alcohol, eating certain foods can make gout worse, but did you know increased stress levels can also trigger a gout attack?
Stress is natural part of being human. Simply, stress may be defined as a feeling of being overloaded, facing uncertainly or facing big changes. When your body experiences real or imagined danger, it kicks into high gear. The body’s natural defense is to “Fight-or-Flight”. This is often called the “Stress Response”
The feeling of stress is your body protecting you. It means it is working properly and helping you to stay focused on the issue at hand. It helps you to rise to the challenge and become the most resourceful you can be. However, beyond certain points, these feelings of stress may start causing major issues in your body.
For many gout sufferers the recent stay-at-home and lock-down situation has caused an increase in gout flair-ups. If you visit any of the leading gout-related forums and groups, you can also read the numerous posts by people who are experiencing increased gout attacks.
Here’s just a sampling of a few of the post I have personally read:
- “Ever since this stay-at-home thing started my gout has flared up.”
- “I can’t believe this!!!! My foot has been beet-red and throbbing for the past few days. I need help!”
- “My husband can’t get out bed. His toe is killing him. He can’t even have a sheet on his foot. Any suggestions to help get rid of his pain?”
- I tried to get an appointment with my doctor today. They said unless it an emergency, appointments are a few weeks out. I need help today”
Although, there are hundreds of similar posts on a number of different gout-related blogs, this certainly doesn’t mean gout attacks are taking over the country. However, there seems to be an increasing number of people suffering from flare-ups.
What Happens When Your Body Experiences Excess Stress?
During times of stress pantothenic acid, which is an essential nutrient, is depleted from your body. This helps to explain why there may be excess gout flair ups during this time of shelter-at-home and increased stress. This essential nutrient helps the body excrete excess uric acid.
Pantothenic acid is water-soluble, which means the body can’t store them. However, the body does consistently keep a small supply in reserve. Fortunately, pantothenic acid is naturally found is some foods.
Unfortunately, many of the foods that naturally contain high pantothenic acid levels also cause gout. So, it wouldn’t be wise to eat these foods if you are suffering from gout. It would be better to focus on ways to stop the gout pain.
Here is a brief list of foods naturally containing high amounts of pantothenic acid:
- Organ meats
Here are 5 ways to Stop Gout in its Track when You Experience Stress
#1: Watch What You Drink
For many, being in a stay-at-home situation is a time to enjoy a few drinks. Since many don’t have to go out to work, it may be tempting to enjoy a beer or cocktail mid-day. However, too much of good thing can turn painful if you have gout.
If you have gout, it is wise not to drink at all, however if you’re going to have a drink during the time you’re in a lock-down situation, reach for red wine. Other popular drinks like beer and liquor tend to cause a flare-up
#2: Drink Cherry Juice Daily
Cherry juice helps to reduce uric acid levels in the body. A recently published study of 120 participants over a 12-month period showed those individuals drinking cherry juice daily enjoyed consistently lower levels of uric acid in their blood. Not only does cherry juice help to reduce uric acid levels, it also helps to reduce inflammation naturally. Learn more cherry juice here.
#3: Drink Plenty of Water
Many people barely drink the recommended 8-glasses of water daily. If you have a history of gout, make sure you drink plenty of water daily. Drinking more water will cause you to use the bathroom more, thus helping to flush out of your system the alcohol you consume. Another benefit of drinking more water daily is it will also help the body to flush out additional purines from some of the food you’re eating, too.
#4: Skip the Salt
Salt dehydrates the body? The issue isn’t about salt itself, but how salt dehydrates the body. As the body behinds to experiences dehydration, this may cause uric acid levels to increase in your body.
In addition, to skipping the salt, you may also want to avoid the consumption of high sodium foods, too. These foods include canned soups, frozen fries and TV dinners. Also, as mentioned in #2, drinking water helps to keep you hydrated.
#5: Try to Avoid Food with High Fructose Corn Syrup
In today’s world, it is hard to avoid food with high fructose corn syrup. The reason is fructose corn can lead to an increase in uric acid levels. During being locked down in your home, consider making homemade items including desserts, gravy, etc. Avoid the store-bought cookies, pies, alcoholic drinks mixed with drinking soda and other prepackaged foods. If possible, read the labels of the food available.