Worldwide Rates Of Gout Are Soaring
A recent study published in the journal Annuals of Rheumatic Diseases found that 1 in 40 people in the UK now have gout. The rates are very similar in the USA and Australia.
Gout is a form of arthritis that occurs when uric acid builds up in excessively high levels in the body. Sodium urate crystals deposit in the joints and can cause severe pain, swelling and redness. The joint in the big toe is most commonly affected, but gout can also occur in the heel, ankle, knee or other parts of the body.
Gout was once quite rare and it was referred to as a disease of overindulgence. The main risk factors for developing gout are being overweight, having diabetes or syndrome X and also having an unhealthy diet. Now that obesity and diabetes are so prevalent, it’s no wonder rates of gout have skyrocketed.
In past decades, the advice for patients suffering from gout was to avoid offal and oily fish such as herrings and sardines, because these foods are rich in purines (substances that break down into uric acid in the body). I can assure you, the gout epidemic we are seeing now is definitely not caused by an explosion in offal consumption.
We now know that sugar, caffeine and alcohol inhibit the body from being able to excrete uric acid, and they are the biggest reasons why so many people are now suffering from the disease.
Gout is a typical feature of syndrome X and if you fix the syndrome X, in most cases you can get rid of gout.