Friday, February 08, 2008

5 Tips For Sticking To Gout Reducing Diets

If you have a gout attack, coffee may be beneficial, but to more effectively treat gout and stop it from occurring, you need to learn how to successfully stick with gout reducing diets. The following are 5 different tips on how you can create a diet plan that will work for you:

Tip 1 - Know what foods to avoid and what foods to welcome into your diet. The goal of any gout prevention diet is to stay away from foods that increase uric acid levels, which increase your risk of a gout attack, and stick with those that keep uric acid levels under control. Make a list of foods to avoid, as well as a list of friendly foods, and keep these lists posted on your fridge, and in your organizer/planner, so you’ll never be without them come mealtime, and when making an effective grocery list. Below are two brief lists:

Foods to avoid:

All alcoholic beverages
Red meat
Organ meat (hearts, kidneys, liver, etc.)
Meat extracts
Fish roes
Legumes (peas, dried beans, etc.)

Beneficial foods:

Complex carbohydrates (bread, pasta, rice, cereal, etc.)
Dark berries (black berries, blueberries, raspberries, etc.)
Flax and flax oil
Olive oil
Fruit juices

Tip 2 – Eat a balanced diet – Knowing what foods to limit and increase in your diet will help to prevent a gout attack, but it’s still important to remain healthy by making sure you’re feeding your body a balanced diet. A balanced diet for gout – according to the American Medical Association - is one that is:

Low in protein - it is recommended that as much as 15% of calorie intake be from sources such as soy, poultry and lean meats, while a maximum of 30% of calories should be from fat.

High in complex carbohydrates (I.E. fruits, vegetables and whole grains)

As a general rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to eat more frequent and smaller meals than fewer larger meals. This will not only help you better digest your food; it also allows you to limit your portion sizes. This way, you can ensure that the protein portion of your meal is always the smallest.

Tip 3 - Plan your meals ahead of time – Planning your meals helps to strengthen your will power when it comes to making food choices. By planning your meals ahead of time, you will avoid giving into your craving for purine-rich foods, which is more likely to occur when you are hungry and haven’t thought about what you are going to eat. For this reason, it is very important that you take the time to prepare yourself a lunch/dinner for work ahead of time, so you don’t continuously eat out, as most restaurants don’t offer menus with meals that prevent a gout attack.

Tip 4 –Know how to make substitutions when eating out – Everyone eats out from time to time, and just because you are prone to gout shouldn’t stop you from this enjoyment. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should indulge in any food offered on the menu. When it comes to eating out, you need to learn how to substitute food to save yourself from a gout attack, while still tantalising your taste buds. Here are a few suggestions:

Appetizer – Instead of mussels try garlic bread or a veggie salad (Note: make sure to eliminate any veggies that are not conducive to a gout diet)

Entrée – Instead of steak have salmon with rice or a vegetarian dish

Dessert – Instead of cappuccino and cheesecake, go for a cup of tea/coffee and a fruit bowl

Tip 5 – Create and discover different gout recipes – Eating the same foods over and over again, or preparing meals the same way, becomes extremely boring and downright depressing after awhile. The last thing you want to do is not look forward to eating, because skipping meals or reverting back to an unhealthy and purine-rich diet will only bring back the gout attack. Take some time to look into gout reducing diets and recipes or started creating some of your own recipes.

About the Author, Lisa McDowell: Grab your free copy of Lisa McDowell's brand new Gout Newsletter here which is overflowing with easy to implement methods to help you relieve and prevent Gout symptoms naturally.

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