What everyone with Gout should know…NOW!

The horribly painful affliction of gout has been with humankind for thousands of years. The ancient Egyptians and Greeks suffered from it. British royalty suffered from it. Perhaps your father or grandfather suffered as well. Gout primarily affects older men and has stayed at a relatively stable level in that population—until the last 30 years. Doctors and scientists are alarmed at the increasing prevalence of gout worldwide. In the United States the incidence of gout more than doubled from 1977 to 1996. In the United Kingdom, gout increased three fold from the 1970s to the 1990s. These are the latest data available. Gout may have increased even more in the last ten years.[1]

There are several causes for this dramatic increase that puts many more people—especially older men and post-menopausal women—at risk for gout. Knowing the new causes for gout will help you take steps to prevent getting it. If you have gout, or know someone who does, this report gives you the latest news about natural prevention and treatments. Warning: The latest research reveals that you may be drinking a common beverage every day that dramatically increases your risk of gout—and all major chronic diseases. Please read this report carefully.

Why You Don’t Want to Get Gout

Gout is an inflammation around the joints caused by an excess of uric acid in the blood. Gout causes excruciating pain. Excess uric acid leads to the formation of sharp crystals in the spaces around joints—especially the big toe. Why the big toe? Uric acid crystals form sooner in the extremities of the body that are slightly cooler— like the big toe.

It was once thought that the pain of gout was caused by the sharp crystals piercing the tissue around the joints However, scientists have now discovered that monosodium urate acid crystals (MSU)—the technical name for uric acid crystals—set off an unusually massive immune response resulting in swelling and painful inflammation.[2] Your immune system sees the crystals as foreign objects and attacks them in the same way they would attack an especially dangerous bacteria. This massive immune response and the resulting inflammation cause the awful pain of gout. The immune/inflammation response is, fortunately, self limiting, but very, very painful. Gout attacks spontaneously end—until the next one starts.

Newly Discovered Cause of Gout! Damaged Cells Form Uric Acid Crystals

Kenneth Rock, Ph.D., the scientist who discovered that the hideous pain of gout is caused by an immune/inflammatory response, also discovered that uric acid released from “damaged cells” signals your immune system to attack. One of the primary causes of gout is cell damage. Many scientists, though not many doctors, know that oxidation and inflammation cause cell damage.

Based on Dr. Rock’s discovery, one way to prevent gout would be to reduce damage to cells and thereby reduce the production of uric acid crystals. How can you do that? As mentioned above, scientific evidence has shown that cells are damaged by excess oxidation from free radicals and by inflammation.[3]

7 Ways You Can Increase
Oxidation and Inflammation and Damage Your Cells

1. Poor Diet — Not enough vitamins and minerals; too much trans fats, fructose corn syrup, sugar, commercial vegetable oils; excess alcohol

2. Too Much Stress — Lack of sleep, anxiety, depression

3. Physical Trauma — Accidents, injuries, extreme hot or cold, surgery, extreme physical exertion, excess sun exposure, x-rays

4. Pathogens — Bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites

5. Reduced Blood/Oxygen Supply — Heart disease, strokes, poor circulation, high blood pressure, asthma, smoking

6. Chemicals and Toxins — Weed killers, bug killers, toxic cleaning supplies, chemotherapy, lead, indoor and outdoor pollution

7. Obesity

How to Reduce Cell Damage from Oxidation

Even though a certain amount of oxidation is normally produced by your body, you also produce natural antioxidants to balance it out. When you create more oxidation than antioxidants, you’re in trouble. It’s called oxidative stress. The way out of this stress is to change your behavior. Don’t do the things that increase oxidation (see above). Do the things that increase antioxidants: eat more fruits, vegetables, herbs and whole grains and take the right kind of antioxidant supplement. By increasing antioxidants and reducing oxidation you may be able to reduce cell damage and the production of uric acid crystals that cause gout.

Antioxidants and the Resveratrol/Alpha Lipoic Acid Connection to Gout

Exciting research by Dr. Lester Packard, Dr. Bruce Ames and Dr. Tory Hagen at the University of California, Berkeley, identified natural antioxidant supplements that reduce oxidative stress and damage to cells.[4] One of the most effective antioxidants is alpha lipoic acid, a “universal antioxidant” that can protect cells from oxidative damage throughout the body.[5]

Researchers at Harvard University have identified the compound resveratrol found in grapes, red wine, red wine extract and Japanese knotweed (polygonum cuspidatum) as a potent antioxidant. It protects against cell damage by increasing healthy levels of nitric oxide in the body.[6] You’ll find out later in this report that polygonum cuspidatum is a natural remedy to lower uric acid. Vitamin C and E are also good antioxidants. Vitamin C has been shown to reduce uric acid as well.[7]

Nitric oxide is necessary for healthy cells, especially in the kidney, heart, brain, and blood vessels. When levels of uric acid go up, nitric oxide goes down. The Nobel Prize was awarded in 1998 for discovering the importance of nitric oxide to health. The forthcoming book, A Cardiologist’s Guide to Anti-Aging, Antioxidants, and Resveratrol by Dr. William Gruss, M.D., contains important information about nitric oxide, antioxidants and your health.

How to Reduce Cell Damage from Inflammation

Reducing inflammation also prevents cell damage. Recent research has shown that uric acid crystals stay in the joints of gout sufferers in between attacks and continue to produce chronic levels of inflammation that damage cells.[8] Quercetin found in apples and onions, curcumin from the spice turmeric, bromelain from pineapple, the herb boswellia, and other natural substances are potent natural anti-inflammatories. Eating foods high in these substances and taking dietary anti-inflammatory supplements can help reduce the damage to cells caused by inflammation and may reduce the production of excess uric acid.

7 Ways to Keep Cells Strong and Healthy

1. Maintain a high level of antioxidants with foods and supplements

2. Reduce inflammation with foods and supplements

3. Get enough sleep and exercise

4. Lower stress

5. Increase nitric oxide with high-flavonoid foods and supplements

6. Reduce toxins and injuries

7. Maintain a normal weight

Healthy Kidneys Essential to Lower Uric Acid

An excess of uric acid is caused by the over production or under excretion of uric acid. Failure to excrete uric acid accounts for 60-90% of excess uric acid. Therefore, maintaining healthy kidney and bowel elimination is obviously one important key to prevention. Dehydration reduces excretion. Hot, humid weather triggers gout attacks, probably because there is a greater risk of dehydration during this type of weather. . Recent research has shown that low-dose (but not high-dose) aspirin reduces excretion of uric acid by 15%.[9] If you have high levels of uric acid, and you take low-dose aspirin, talk to your doctor about alternatives.

You can support healthy urinary elimination by drinking at least eight glasses of water a day. You can also maintain regular bowel elimination by eating high fiber fruits, grains and vegetables, lowering stress, and taking probiotic natural cultures in yoghurt or supplements.[10]

Shocking News! Scientists Discover That a Common Sweetener Raises Uric Acid, Increases Oxidation, and Damages Kidneys

The very latest research is showing that high levels of uric acid are not only associated with gout. Excess uric acid may be a factor in the current epidemic of most chronic diseases including kidney disease, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, diabetes 2 and obesity. All of these conditions are also thought to be associated with oxidative stress.[11] [12] In fact, levels of uric acid may be a reliable predictor of these diseases. The big question, of course, is what is causing the rise in diseases associated with uric acid. Scientists now think they have the answer. They believe one of the main culprits is fructose corn syrup.

Warning! Extreme Gout Risk! Fructose corn syrup increases uric acid, damages kidneys, increases oxidative stress, and lowers nitric oxide.

Are sodas and foods sweetened with fructose corn syrup really one of the primary causes of the dramatic rise in gout and other chronic diseases? The evidence is overwhelming that it is. However, this research is so recent that your doctor may not know about it. Please show him this report. Companies that make fructose-sweetened products like sodas are big advertisers and very powerful, so you may not see this research reported in the mainstream news media.

“… we present evidence that the unique ability of fructose to induce an increase in uric acid may be a major mechanism by which fructose can cause cardiorenal [heart/kidney] disease.”

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, October, 2007

“Fructose-induced hyperuricemia [high uric acid] might have a causal role in metabolic syndrome, hypertension, and other chronic disease.”

Hypertension, June, 2007

“…consumption of a high-fructose diet greatly accelerates progression of chronic kidney diseases…”

AJP Renal Physiology, August, 2007

“Uric acid … is associated with progressive renal [kidney] disease in humans…”

Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, December, 2006

“Fructose raises uric acid…and inhibits nitric oxide bioavailability.”

AJP Renal Physiology, October, 2005

” …uric acid may have a role in the epidemic of metabolic syndrome and renal [kidney] disease that is occurring throughout the world.”

Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, December, 2006

“…uric acid has pro-inflammatory effects…and causes dysfunction of endothelial cells…uric acid is associated with renal [kidney] and cardiovascular disease.”

Current Opinion in Nephrology and Hypertension, January, 2006

“…fructose raises serum uric acid [which] predicts the development of obesity and hypertension…”

AJP Renal Physiology ,October, 2005

Warning! Aspirin — Diuretic — Fructose Combo May Be Dangerous

Dosages of less than 2,000 mg aspirin a day reduce the excretion of uric acid. A dose of 75 mg/day decreased uric acid excretion by 15% and significantly increased uric acid levels. High dosages of aspirin (over 3,000 mg a day) did not affect uric acid. Combining aspirin with thiazide diuretics prescribed for hypertension worsened the effects of aspirin on uric acid levels.[13] Combining fructose with these diuretics also increased uric acid levels.[14]

Some Surprises — What to Eat/What Not to Eat

Modern research supports the traditional advice to limit purine-rich meat (beef, pork, lamb, liver), seafood, bacon, beer, yeast and liquor. However, scientists at Harvard found that eating an overall high-protein diet (chicken, duck, turkey) did not increase risk of gout and that purine-rich vegetables such as peas, beans, lentils, asparagus, and cauliflower did not increase the risk either. Drinking beer increased the risk for gout the most, followed by liquor consumption. Wine was not a significant factor for gout.[15] This research allows gout sufferers to have a more balanced diet.

Dairy products, fruits and vegetables are good for gout. There was a 50% reduction in gout incidence among those eating the most dairy products, especially yoghurt. Fruits—especially cherries (half a pound a day)—and vegetables reduce risk of gout due to several factors.[16] [17] Grapes, cherries, blueberries, hawthorn berries, raspberries, and other fruits and vegetables are high in anthocyanidins, antioxidants and natural anti-inflammatory substances, which protect cells and reduce uric acid production. Fruits and vegetables are also high in fiber which binds uric acid and helps excrete it through the bowels.[18]

Men who drank four to five cups of coffee a day had a 40 percent lower risk of gout and men who drank six or more cups a day had a 59 percent lower risk. Teak drinking and total caffeine intake did not have any effect on gout risk. The researcher speculated that a strong antioxidant in coffee may be the way that it works. If you can’t tolerate that much coffee, consider taking other antioxidants.[19]

New, Natural Treatments for Gout

One of the common medical treatments for gout is the drug allopurinol. Allopurinol works by inhibiting an enzyme called xanthine oxidase. This enzyme triggers the last step in the conversion of purines to uric acid. By inhibiting xanthine oxidase, it is possible to reduce uric acid. There are natural ways to inhibit this enzyme.

Plant High in Resveratrol Equal to Prescription Medication

Researchers studied a total of 122 traditional Chinese medicinal plants used for gout and other uric-acid-related diseases. They found that several of these plants were able to inhibit the enzyme xanthine oxidase. Two plants were equal to allopurinol in inhibition of xanthine oxidase! They were an alcohol extract of cinnamon (cinnamomum cassia(Lauraceae) and a water extract of Japanese knotweed rhizome (polygonum cuspidatum), a plant very high in resveratrol.[20] Resveratrol products made with polygonum cuspidatum for heart health and anti-aging may also be helpful for gout

Caution: Do not take herbal remedies if you are taking colchine.

Natural Remedies for Gout [21] [22] [23] [24] [25] [26]

Resveratrol source (Polygonum cuspidatum) — 100 mg three times daily

Alpha lipoic acid — 100 mg three times daily

Grape seed extract -100 mg three times daily

Quercetin — 100 mg three times daily

Celery Seed — 450 mg daily (divided into 4 doses)

Vitamin C — 500-1000 mg daily

Cinnamon — 80 mg/day as an ethanol extract

Dosages for the following anti-inflammatory herbs: two 500 mg capsules of dried herb, three times daily for two to seven days.

Baikal skullcap

Boswellia

Curcumin

Devil’s Claw

Yucca

Flushing Out Uric Acid

  • Celery and parsley juice
  • Nettle and horsetail tea, three times daily for three weeks
  • Gravelroot tea, three times daily.

For more information about natural therapies that reduce cell damage from oxidation and inflammation, Natural Health News Report highly recommends the new book by cardiologist Dr. William Gruss, M.D., A Cardiologist’s Guide to Anti-Aging, Antioxidants and Resveratrol available from www.naturalhealthnewsreport.com or call toll-free 1-800-917-8914 (Florida residents please call 1-561-750-4133) now to order a hard copy.

Other recommended books: The Antioxidant Miracle by Dr. Lester Packard and NO More Heart Disease by Nobel Prize Winner, Dr. Louis Ignarro, give good insight into the importance of antioxidants and nitric oxide in preventing chronic diseases.

References

[1] Saag K, Choi H. Epidemiology, risk factors, and lifestyle modifications for gout. Arthritis Research & therapy 2006, 8(Suppl 1)LS2.

[2] Chen CJ, Shi Y, Rock K, et al. MyD88-dependent IL-1 receptor signaling is essential for gouty inflammation stimulated by monosodium urate crystals. J Clin Invest. 2006 Aug;116(8):2262-71.

[3] Gruss WS. The cardiologist’s guide to anti-aging, antioxidants and resveratrol. Renaissance Health Education: Boca Raton, Florida. 2007.

[4] Hagen TM, Ames BN, et al. Feeding acetyl-L-carnitine and lipoic acid to old rats significantly improves metabolic function while decreasing oxidative stress. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Feb 19;99(4):1870-5.

[5] Packer L, Witt E, et al. Alpha lipoic acid as a biological antioxidant. Free Rad Biol Med. 1995;19:227-50.

[6] Baur JA, Sinclair DA, et al. Resveratrol improves health and survival of mice on a high-calorie diet. Nature. 2006 Nov 16;444(7117):337-42.

[7] Huang HY, Appel LJ, et al. The effects of vitamin C supplementation on serum concentrations of uric acid: results of a randomized controlled trial. Arthritis Rheum. 52.6(2005):1843-47.

[8] Pascual E Pedraz T. Gout. Curr Opin Rheumatol. 2004 May;16(3):282-86.

[9] Saag K, Choi H. Epidemiology, risk factors, and lifestyle modifications for gout. Arthritis Research & therapy 2006, 8(Suppl 1)LS2.

[10] Fam AG. Pathogenesis of hyperuricemia in patients with primary gout. Primary Care Canada. 1997;8:9-10.

[11] Johnson RJ, Segal MS, et al. Potential role of sugar (fructose) in the epidemic of hypertension, obesity and the metabolic syndrome, diabetes, kidney disease, and cardiovascular disease. Am J Clin Nutr 2007;86:899-906.

[12] Sautin YY, Nakagawa Y, et al. Adverse effects of the classic antioxidant uric acid in adipocytes: NADPH oxidase-mediated oxidative/nitrosative stress. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2007 Aug;293(2):C584-96.

[13] Saag K, Choi H. Epidemiology, risk factors, and lifestyle modifications for gout. Arthritis Research & therapy 2006, 8(Suppl 1)LS2.

[14] Reungjui S, Roncal CA, et al. Thiazide diurtics exacerbate fructose-induced metabolic syndrome. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2007 Sep; 18: 2724-31.

[15] Saag K, Choi H. Epidemiology, risk factors, and lifestyle modifications for gout. Arthritis Research & therapy 2006, 8(Suppl 1)LS2.

[16]Lyu LC, Hsu CY, et al. A case-control study of the association of diet and obesity with gout in Taiwan. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Oct;78(4):69—701.

[17] Fam AG. Gout, diet, and the insulin resistance syndrome. J Rheumatol. 2002 Jul;29(7):1350-5

[18] Diet and Gout. Available from: www.webmd.com.

[19] Choi H, Willet W, et al. Coffee consumption and risk of incident gout in men: a prospective study. Arthritis Rheum. 2007 Jun;56(6):2049-55.

[20] Kong LD, Huang WW, et al. Inhibition of xanthine oxidase by some Chinese medicinal plants used to treat gout. J Ethnopharmacol. 2000;73(1-2):199-207.

[21] Wang Y, Zhu JX, et al. Administration of procyanidins from grape seeds reduces serum uric acid levels and decreases hepatic xanthine dehydrogenase/oxidase activities in oxonate-treaed mice. Pharmacology and Toxicology. 2004 May; 94(5): 232-37.

[22] Jacob RA, Spinozzi GM, ete al. Consumption of cherries lowers plasma urate in health women. J Nutr. 2003 Jun;133(6):1826-9.

[23] Khan A, Safdar M, Ali Khan MM, Khattak KN, Anderson RA. Cinnamon improves glucose and lipids of people with type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care . 2003;26:3215-3218.

[24] Lin CM, Chen CS, et al. Molecular modeling of flavonoids that inhibit xanthine oxidase. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2002 May 31;294(1):167-72.

[25] Broadhurst, CL. Ease gout pain. Nutrition Science News. July, 1999. Available from: http://www.newhope.com.

[26] Gout. Available from: http://www.holisticonline.com

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