What is Gout?
Literature from the past speaks of a most painful disease
that mysteriously seemed to afflict only the only classes
- people who were able to eat more and "better"
food than most of the ordinary folks could afford - Gout.
this "royal" form of arthritis has become so democratic
that it actually is more common at the other end of the socioeconomic
scale. About one million Americans have gout, making it first
on the list of inflammatory joint diseases. Most of its victims
are men over age 40, but women are not immune to it either.
happens when a person develops gout?
people have the primary form, which develops when the body
either makes too much uric acid or the kidneys are unable
to clear this substance from the blood stream fast enough.
A high level of uric acid can lead to the formation of urate
crystals, which settle in joint tissues and ultimately lead
to the agonizing symptoms of gouty arthritis. Hypertension
can damage the kidneys and some medications, used to lower
blood pressure, actually raise uric acid levels in the blood.
does not happen overnight. Urate crystals may build up silently
for decades. Then, with little warning, an attack of excruciating
pain tells the victim that something is seriously amiss. The
trouble starts when needlelike urate crystals form in joint
fluid. There they trigger a series of events that draw white
blood cells to the area. These cells engulf the crystals,
which they correctly see as dangerous invaders, and in the
ensuing battle the joint swells and reddens with inflammation.
The body's fight can be so intense that the victim may actually
develop a fever, especially if several joints are affected.
After the initial attack, the person may not experience another
one for quite some time, eventually however, if the disease
is left to run its natural course, chalky urate deposits called
tophi, can collect in joints, ligaments and tendons and under
the skin. In addition to permanent joint damage, long-term
complications can include kidney stones.
men who are afflicted have their first attack in their late
30s or 40s. The situation is different for women, who typically
don't have their first flare-up until they are in their 60s.
Early in life, estrogen protects women against high uric acid
levels. In menopause, estrogen levels fall and uric acid levels
can be done?
medical procedure involves giving the patient certain drugs
that keep uric acid levels in check. Unfortunately, these
drugs have serious side-effects ranging from rashes to liver
damage. One drug that suppresses the inflammatory response
is so toxic that it is only used in small doses to ward off
especially painful attacks of gout.
Eating "well", which usually means eating too much
of the wrong kinds of foods, used to be for wealthy people
only. Today, almost everyone in this country at least, can
afford to eat themselves into their early graves. An average
sized man who gains just 10 pounds between the ages of 25
and 35 doubles his baseline risk for the disease. For every
10 pounds thereafter, a man's risk doubles again. Diabetes
and hypertension increase the risk for gout, so does alcohol
consumption on a regular basis. About 75% of people with gout
have high levels of triglycerides, which are fatty substances
in the blood.
other words, - take Mrs. Hsu's food combining ideas to heart
and exercise on a regular basis.
there is more. Many people have reported especially good results
in reducing uric acid levels by taking one of Mrs.Hsu's old
and time honored "supplements" - GINSENG
TEA! If you already have been taking ginseng
tea regularly, you know of its many health benefits, its ability
to lower uric acid levels in the blood may however be news
to you. If you are not drinking it yet and your physician
tells you that you have an elevated uric acid count, give
ginseng a try (3-5 cups of Korean Panax ginseng a day) and
see what happens to your blood. You will be pleasantly surprised.