Gout was once called “ailment of kings,” because it afflicted only those who could buy a special diet. Now over 8 million ordinary individuals are affected by the disease. Some say it’s because we are eating more meat as compared in the past.
Based on the report posted by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, gout is the most popular inflammatory disease both for men and women. It is a common knowledge that pork and gout should not go together. This post will enlighten you that even if you have gout, you can still eat pork.
What is Gout?
Gout is a unique type of arthritis where the joints are being filled up with uric acid which causes pain, redness, and inflammation. The majority of people with gout have elevated uric acid in the blood. Uric acid crystals can also cause kidney stone and damage. At present, over 20% of Americans have very high uric acid levels.
Causes of Gout
The accumulation of urate crystals in your joint is one of the common causes of gout. The urate crystals can form high levels of uric acid in the blood that causes intense pain and inflammation.
When the purines are broken down in the body, it yields uric acid. Purines are substance found naturally in the body. You will somewhat see the relationship between pork and gout. It is also found in some foods like steak, seafood, and organ meats. Alcoholic beverages mainly beer and sweetened drinks with fruit sugar also contain purine.
Uric acid should be eliminated in the body through your urine. However, sometimes our body produces more uric acid than normal, or the kidneys are excreting a small amount of uric acid. It can cause uric acid buildup, producing sharp needle-like crystals in the joint that causes redness, pain, and inflammation.
How Much Meat Can You Eat?
Pork, beef, turkey, lamb, and white meat chicken are high in purine. Some people are blaming meat for causing gout attacks. But actually, it is not the meat that causes their joints pain. Just because it was the last meal they ate before their gout attack, they are blaming meat since it contains high purines.
Trout, tuna, and salmon have more purines than lamb, pork, and beef. But have you heard of someone blaming tuna, salmon, and trout that causes their gout attack? If you check the amount of purines chicken breast has more purines than other cuts of beef, but you seldom hear that they will tell you to stop eating chicken breast.
But when asked about pork and gout some people would tell you that it’s the pork that causes your pain.
Pork and gout is a hot subject, but the truth is meat is not necessarily the reason why you’re in pain.
In America, there is no recommended daily intake for purines. However, in other countries, the recommended purine consumption is 400mg per day.
Meat Did Not Increase Uric Acid
In the study of gout and Atkins diet, meat ingestion was not decreased, although participants already had gout. There are some instances where gout attacks were not experienced for 16 weeks, and the frequency of the attacks has dropped significantly, it was not because of low purine diet.
And after one year, five participants had not experienced another gout attack. The study started with participants experiencing at least two gout attacks in the past four months. Among the 5 participants who had not suffered another attack, neither had the fish they were advised to eat at least four times a week.
Robert Atkins, the founder of Atkins diet, reported that patients on a diet were not expected to reduce their uric acid. According to him that most of the patients in the study have been eating meats. And this study the meat did not raise uric acid. Thus it does not mean that if you consume more pork and gout attacks, the meat causes it. Other factors might have triggered it. (acumedico.com)
Meat a Risk Factor for Gout
There is a wrong notion that meat can cause gout. No study can prove this fact. It could be a contributing factor why you have gout attacks, but it all depends on your consumption and other factors. For instance, in a study where 47,150 men were monitored for 12 years, with meat on their diet. After the study period, only 730 men were diagnosed to have gout.
Upon checking, the men who developed gout have one serving of meat in a day. Those who have two servings of meat have the risk of having gout by 41% than those who ate less than a meal in a day. Based on this study the increased risk of gout was manifested only to those who are consuming a vast amount of lamb, beef, and pork a day.
In the same study, the following meats were not included in the risk factor of gout – salami, bacon, hamburgers, sausage, and hot dogs. The above findings were more relevant to men aged 40 years and above.
The men who participated in the study were not using natural treatments for gouts, or into anti-gout diets. Other factors affecting uric acid are pH levels, alkaline water drinking, consuming gout positive foods like celery and cherries, and vitamin and minerals intake.
If you are eating pork twice a day, drank alkaline water and at least 500mg of vitamin C a day and took more 140 mcg of folate in their diet every day, and ate celery or celeries every day or every other day there is a high risk that you will experience gout attacks.
Consume less pork and gout will be experienced less. But it does not necessarily mean that if you add extra meat serving a day, you will have gout attacks.
Pork Consumptions and Other Foods
To reduce gout attacks, MayoClinic.com suggests that you should limit meat to 4 to 6 oz per day. Instead go for plant-based protein sources like tofu, lentils, and beans. Choose the lean cuts of pork if you cannot avoid it and add nutritious ingredients on it. Instead of butter, for instance, use a small amount of canola or olive oil, which are known as sources of unsaturated fat. Cook your food using techniques like baking, grilling, broiling, and steaming.
Limit your intake of foods high in purine like organ meats, such as liver and kidney, oily fish including herring, salmon, and mackerel. Consume more fiber-rich foods this will help control your appetite. Some of the fiber-rich foods include lentils, peas, artichokes, beans, raspberries, whole grain, and broccoli. Also, add antioxidant-rich foods like cherries, bell peppers, tomatoes, squash, and blueberries to help reduce gout symptoms. Drinking low-fat milk and yogurt regularly may help lower your uric acid levels.
This is a simple recommendation about pork and gout. Eat meat not more than 3 or 4 times a week, and if you love lamb, pork, and beef 4 to 6 ounces of these once a week. On the results of the studies above, you will be of the risk of having gout attacks when eating lobster, scallops, or shrimp. Make sure to limit it at least once a week. Follow the above diet so your gout attacks will be reduced.