increased uric acid levels - How Much Do You Know About Gout And Diet Prevention?
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How Much Do You Know About Gout And Diet Prevention?

Recently, a gout and diet prevention study was published in by Dr. Hyon K. Choi and Gary Curhan in Arthritis Care & Research's June 2007 issue which examined the fact that, contrary to popular belief, coffee may not be as bad for gout sufferers as previously thought. Although gout patients have been told to stay away from coffee, there may be an ingredient in the beverage that can actually help to lower the uric acid levels in the body.


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 increased uric acid levels
You can even discover how cooking, canning and freezing various foods affects the Vitamin C content of them. (It usually falls). Not only can you look up each food you are interested via the database but you can also at this site look up lists (called reports) sorted from highest to lowest and download those lists to your home or office computer. For some investigations, it's a great time saver. These reports require Adobe Reader.

In earlier articles I have written about the success a South African study of the use of three Zone diet rules had in lowering uric acid and against gout attacks in 13 male gout patients. Essentially, at the practical, do-it-yourself level, the Zone diet involves discovering your ideal amount of carbohydrates, protein and fats, and then implementing these amounts in your diet. How to discover and implement them are in the book "Entering the Zone" (aka the Zone diet) with additional tips and techniques in follow-up book "Mastering the Zone," both written by Barry Sears PhD. So too are many of the necessary values in foods. But the values tables in the books do not cover as many foods and beverages as does this "Titanic of nutrition" database.

A similar belief was once applied to alcohol. It was thought that spirits, wine, and beer were the true cause of gout. Indeed, drinking to excess can be harmful to gout sufferers, especially due to the resulting dehydration of the body. Hydration is especially important to gout sufferers as it allows the body to flush the uric acid out of the blood, preventing its buildup as crystals on the joints. However, drinking alcohol is not a direct cause of gout.

You probably already know gout is caused by high levels of uric acid in the blood. However, did you know that four stages of gout exist and each stage has very unique characteristics of this painful infliction?

The carbohydrate, protein and fats amount in foods can be easily found in the National Nutrient database. For this diet you also need to distinguish between mono and poly unsaturated fats and saturated fats. The amounts of these in foods are easily discovered in the database

Vitamin C has been pretty well researched as a natural gout remedy. It has been found to lower uric acid levels somewhat. In the last study about it in 2005, with 500 mg of Vitamin C daily. Vitamin C is best taken in foods. Use the National Nutrient database to find the natural Vitamin C content of foods

It was also believed at one time that eating rich foods was the root cause of gout. Indeed, some rich foods are high in proteins and purines and therefore may contribute to gout flare-ups, however low fat dairy products have now been shown to have a preventative effect. Also Gout is believed to be caused by many factors, including being heredity.

To download visit http://www.ars.usda.gov/Services/docs.htm?docid=8964 Scroll down to where the text says "download the database for use on your computer with various software packages." Click on this. On the next page that arrives click on pcs20 exe to download it. There is also an 11 page downloadable guide in Adobe Reader which explains how to download, and how to use the database. Click on "user's guide."

pH OF FOODS NUMBERS Alkalizing your body (raising its pH levels above pH 7.0) is an important part of natural gout treatment because the pH theory is that a more alkaline body make uric acid more soluble and better absorbs nutrients in foods. One way to improve your body's pH levels is to ensure adequate levels of potassium, calcium, magnesium and zinc. All are important in alkalization but more calcium may be the most since if your body is acidic (low pH levels below pH 7.0) it may be scavenging calcium from your bones. Why? Blood pH must be at pH 7.365. The body will ensure that it is, even if it has to loot calcium elsewhere to do it. All these minerals amounts in foods and beverage are shown in the National Nutrient database.

Normal results

Blood test

Reference values for blood uric acid vary from laboratory to laboratory but are generally found within the following range: Male: 2.1-8.5 mg/dL; female: 2.0-6.6 mg/dL. Values may be slightly higher in the elderly.

Decreased excretion of uric acid is seen in chronic kidney disease, low thyroid, toxemia of pregnancy, and alcoholism. Patients with gout excrete less than half the uric acid in their blood as other persons. Only 10-15% of the total cases of hyperuricemia, however, are caused by gout.

PURINE TABLES Over-producers of uric acid (as opposed to under-excretors) may benefit from a low purine gout diet since restricting purines in foods probably means less available to be converted into uric acid. Do you want the purines contents of foods and drinks? Visit http://www.acumedico.com/purine.htm

If you wish to learn more about Gout, Purines, or Uric Acid, check out Steve's s The Internet Guides. The Internet Guide: Uric Acid: http://gout.smartadssecrets.com/uric_acid

Precautions

Blood test

Patients scheduled for a blood test for uric acid should be checked for the following medications: loop diuretics (Diamox, Bumex, Edecrin, or Lasix); ethambutol (Myambutol); vincristine (Oncovin); pyrazinamide (Tebrazid); thiazide diuretics (Naturetin, Hydrex, Diuril, Esidrix, HydroDiuril, Aquatensen, Renese, Diurese); aspirin (low doses); acetaminophen (Tylenol); ascorbic acid (vitamin C preparations); levodopa (Larodopa); or phenacetin. These drugs can affect test results.

The Internet Guide: Gout - http://gout.smartadsscrets.com The Internet Guide: Purines - http://gout.smartadssecrets.com/purines

Risks

Risks for the blood test are minimal, but may include slight bleeding from the puncture site, a small bruise or swelling in the area, or fainting or feeling lightheaded.

The laboratory should also be notified if the patient has had recent x-ray tests requiring contrast dyes. These chemicals increase uric acid levels in urine and decrease them in blood.

Steve Warshaw - Certified Personal Trainer and Nutritionist With over 15 years expereience developing training and nutrition programs for top level executives from companies such as Microsoft, Boeing, and Symetra Corp, Steve has established himself as a health and wellness expert.

This can also be done for alkalizing minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium and zinc. And for important antioxidants that gout sufferers need such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium and Beta Carotene.

Abnormally low uric acid levels may indicate that the patient is taking allopurinol or probenecid for treatment of gout; may be pregnant; or suffers from Wilson's disease or Fanconi's syndrome.

Stage #2: The gout starts to harm the body. This second stage is called acute gouty arthritis or acute gout. This is the stage that jagged crystal-like formations begin to deposit themselves in joint spaces. This is also the stage when redness, pain and swelling occurs.

Considering that until this study, gout sufferers had been discouraged from drinking coffee, many gout sufferers may now be wondering what other gout and diet prevention beliefs may soon turn out to be disproved. For example, though tea has not been found to reduce uric acid levels in the body as has now been demonstrated with coffee, tea is often thought to be unacceptable as a part of a gout and diet prevention strategy. Instead, tea can indeed be a part of a gout diet as long as it is consumed in moderation and as long as its dehydrating effect is compensated for by taking in additional water.

So much of natural gout treatment requires diet and every gout sufferer has to pay very close attention to what they eat and drink. Imagine how useful a nutrition database on your home computer is; one that you can quickly access, without going to the Internet or 500 page reference books, to look up the nutrients in foods and beverages. And suppose that this comprehensive database is free and easily downloaded? Too good to be true?

The uric acid tests are used to evaluate the blood levels of uric acid for gout and to assess uric acid levels in the urine for kidney stone formation. The urine test is used most often to monitor patients already diagnosed with kidney stones, but it can also be used to detect disorders that affect the body's production of uric acid and to help measure the level of kidney functioning.

If you wish to learn more about Steve or to request training or nutrition information, please check out his website: http://www.bodybuiltbyvictoria.com

A similar study in Japan looked into the same concept, but used decaffeinated coffee. Similar, though not equal, results were witnessed. This is why it is now thought that components of coffee other than soley caffeine are responsible for lowering the uric acid levels in the body.

If you don't wish to download it, the database can also be viewed online HOW EXACTLY CAN A GOUT SUFFERER USE IT? Apart from the obvious benefit of quickly learning the nutrient values of foods to construct a free gout diet. Here are a few ways.

 
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Definition

Uric acid tests are tests that are done to measure the levels of uric acid in blood serum or in urine.

Purpose





" Cherry juice concentrate is a highly concentrate way to get the pain relieving property of the tart cherry. It takes approximately 100 cherries to make just one ounce of tart cherry juice. A reliable source for tart cherry juice concentrate is Traverse Bay Farms http://www.traversebayfarms.com

Here is a brief list of foods that are high in purines and should be avoided since high purine food contributes to the gout. These foods include alcohol, seafood, beans, scallops, and sweetbread.

For example one fruit that has a proven track record in fighting gout pain is the tart cherry. Tart cherries have been proven by medical research universities to help fight gout pain. The benefit of the tart cherry is this little fruit is available is a variety of options including tart cherry juice and tart cherry capsules. Here is a brief overview of the different ways to fight gout with tart cherries:

Not in this case. The USDA National Nutrient database for Windows, Standard Reference, Release SR20 is free and it's easily downloaded. It comes courtesy of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture and HeatheTech Inc.

Stage #1: Higher levels of uric acid begin to form. This first stage is called Asymptomatic Hyperuricemia. In this stage, you will probably not feel any symptoms. Catching the gout at this stage is vital so you don't experience the pain of the gout.

Though it is not yet known what part of coffee is responsible for lowering the uric acid levels in the body, it is known that it is not just the caffeine content, as the same results were not found from drinking caffeinated tea. Whatever the cause, when participants drank one to two cups of coffee every day, the levels of uric acid in the blood reduced dramatically. Furthermore, as coffee consumption increased, uric acid levels decreased.

Increased production of uric acid may result from eating foods that are high in purine. Increased uric acid levels due to overproduction may also be caused by gout, by a genetic disorder of purine metabolism, or by metastatic cancer, destruction of red blood cells, leukemia, or cancer chemotherapy.

Now that you know a few of the foods to avoid here are few suggestions on what foods to eat. Here a brief list of foods that are low in purines and you should incorporate them into your diet. These foods include peanut butter, oatmeal, eggs, cereals, fruits and milk.

Stage #3: This stage is Intercritical gout. This is when an gout attack has subsided. This is the stage the body begins to stabilize itself and fights the uric acid crystals in the joints. Getting treatment is vital at this stage if the individual wants to control the gout.

Abnormal results

The critical value for the blood test is a level of uric acid higher than 12 milligrams per deciliter (about 3.4 ounces).

Which foods are acidic and which are alkaline? Visit http://www.home.bluegrass.net/~jclark/alkaline_foods.htm to download pH potential of foods tables.

Certain foods that are high in purine may increase the patient's levels of uric acid. These include kidneys, liver, sweetbreads, sardines, anchovies, and meat extracts.

Description

The uric acid blood test is performed on a sample of the patient's blood, withdrawn from a vein into a vacuum tube. The procedure, which is called a venipuncture, takes about five minutes. The urine test requires the patient to collect all urine voided over a 24-hour period, with the exception of the very first specimen. The patient keeps the specimen container on ice or in the refrigerator during the collection period.

Uric acid is a waste product that results from the breakdown of purine, a nucleic acid. (Nucleic acids are the building blocks of DNA.) Uric acid is made in the liver and excreted by the kidneys. If the liver produces too much uric acid or the kidneys excrete too little, the patient will have too much uric acid in the blood. This condition is called hyperuricemia. Supersaturated uric acid in the urine (uricosuria) can crystallize to form kidney stones that may block the tubes that lead from the kidneys to the bladder (the ureters).

Its site says that there are Mac and handheld versions too. So if you use a handheld computer it can be used outside your home. It can be searched online for the vitamin, mineral, water, ash, protein, calorie, carbohydrate, fats, fibre (fiber), sugars, caffeine and others, of foods and beverages.

Eating right and selecting low purine foods can help you to manage gout pain and enjoy a painful life.

" Tart cherry capsules are made with tart cherry powder. The tart cherry powder is made using the freeze-dried process. The freeze dried process uses low heat and low temperature, thus maintaining 100% of the phytochemicals of the tart cherry. A good source of tart cherry capsules is Fruit Advantage http://www.fruitadvantage.com

If you don't want to take medication, due to possible and serious side effects, you have another alternative that can be better then medication - eating the right food.

Urine test

Reference values for 24-hour urinary uric acid vary from laboratory to laboratory but are generally found within the following range: 250-750 mg/24 hours.

Key Terms

Fanconi's syndrome
A rare disorder caused by vitamin D deficiency or exposure to heavy metals.
Gout
A metabolic disorder characterized by sudden recurring attacks of arthritis caused by deposits of crystals that build up in the joints due to abnormally high uric acid blood levels. In gout, uric acid may be overproduced, underexcreted, or both.
Hyperuricemia
Excessively high levels of uric acid in the blood, often producing gout.
Purine
A white crystalline substance that is one of the building blocks of DNA. Uric acid is produced when purine is broken down in the body.
Uric acid
A compound resulting from the body's breakdown of purine. It is normally present in human urine only in small amounts.
Uricosuria
Increased levels of uric acid in the urine.
Wilson's disease
A rare hereditary disease marked by the buildup of copper in the liver and brain, causing loss of kidney function.

Further Reading

For Your Information

    Books

  • Laboratory Test Handbook, edited by David S. Jacobs. Cleveland, OH: Lexi-Comp Inc., 1996.
  • Mosby's Diagnostic and Laboratory Test Reference, edited by Kathleen Deska Pagana and Timothy James Pagana. St. Louis: Mosby-Year Book, Inc., 1998.
  • Springhouse Corporation. Handbook of Diagnostic Tests, edited by Matthew Cahill. Springhouse, PA: Springhouse Corporation, 1995.

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Preparation

The uric acid test requires either a blood or urine sample. For the blood sample, the patient should be fasting (nothing to eat or drink) for at least eight hours before the test. The urine test for uric acid requires a 24-hour urine collection. The urine test does not require the patient to fast or cut down on fluids. Some laboratories encourage patients to drink plenty of fluids during the collection period.

It is important to speak with your doctor and dietitian about gout and diet prevention and what you should be eating to help to control your gout. However, it is also wise to keep up with the latest research, as the "truths" that we know about gout diets are always changing.

Urine test

Patients should be checked for the following medications before the urine test: diuretics, aspirin, pyrazinamide (Tebrazid), phenylbutazone, probenecid (Benemid), and allopurinol (Lopurin). If the patient needs to continue taking these medications, the laboratory should be notified.

Stage #4: This is the final stage of gout and it is called chronic gout. This stage can cause permanent damage to the joints and kidney, too. Eating Right Can Stop the Gout.

Gotcha! Three very useful free gout resources to use as part of natural gout treatment.

John Mepham has spent much time researching gout. His best tip for curing gout naturally? Get to your ideal weight whatever the sacrifices may be. Learn more about natural gout treatment and natural remedies for gout at www.gout-smashers-guide.com It's an e-book with a emphasis on natural gout treatment.


Myrtle Randolph

 
 
     
 
 





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