Gout, Arthritis, Inflammation: The relation to the diet

This may be one of the most complex areas to understand, and we are gaining new knowledge all the time. For far too long we have remained focused on certain food triggers rather than the source and the reasoning behind our reaction. Food selection is very important. The larger, and often overlooked, picture would be the lack of pH balance to each meal, general unhealthy food choices for far too long, high-heat cooking methods, and an overabundance of processed and now genetically modified selections in the typical diet.

Questions to consider:

  • Is red meat the enemy OR is it the grain fed caged source vs. grass fed and free to roam source?
  • Is the inflammatory inducing acid of the protein the problem OR are we not providing enough alkaline food sources in the same meal to buffer the acids and still benefit from the good it has to offer?
  • What is the true source behind the body’s inflammatory reaction?

You will continue to find conflicting information on what is considered to be a ‘healthy diet,’ rendering you helpless in making concrete decisions on your approach for change.

Here is what we do know:

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Traditional Gout Medications

Most commonly prescribed Gout medication options include:

Xanthine Inhibitors: These actually block the enzyme, (xanthine oxidase) necessary for the conversion of purines to uric acid. As of result, blood serum levels are lowered and used to prevent chronic gout, stones, and hyperuricemia. It is not actually a treatment for an acute attack, and can even exacerbate an attack if used while it’s running its course. This treatment sounds good in theory, however, un-naturally stopping a very natural and necessary production such as uric acid must take its toll on the body somehow? After all, uric acid is a potent antioxidant vital to the human body. Attempting to halt its production could be detrimental to its important role as the protector of our DNA. As a result, it is necessary to monitor the liver, kidneys, and blood during its use.

Possible side effects include:

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Arthritis and Joint Pain

Many forms of arthritis are caused by chronic low lying inflammation. Inflammatory cells called cytokines lead to the production of enzymes that attack the tissues and break down cartilage in joints. The word ‘arthritis’ literally means inflammation (itis) of the joints (arthri).

When the body feels as though it is ‘under attack’, it responds by sending white blood cells to that area in an attempt to repair. In cases of chronic inflammation, when these cells fall victim of misfiring, this ‘repair’ actually becomes the damage. The increase in blood flow to these areas causes tender, red, and swollen joints. In turn, the nerves are stimulated, and pain is the result. The heightened number of cells and inflammatory substances within the joint can cause irritation, wearing of the cartilage, and swelling of the joint lining (synovium).

Common Types of Arthritis

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Understanding Uric Acid

Uric Acid

Purines perform multiple important functions within our cells, including regulating energy metabolism and signaling the energy conversion from one to another.  Purines are essentially the building blocks for all living things as a necessity for the growth, proliferation and survival of all cells.  The two purine bases, adenine and guanine, create bonds that form the DNA ladder. Humans breakdown purines and convert them into uric acid.

Uric acid happens to be a potent DNA protector.  All other mammals possess an enzyme known as uricase.  Uricase converts uric acid into allantoin, which can easily travel through the bloodstream and readily eliminated through the urine.  Humans do not possess this enzyme, therefore, we cannot oxidize uric acid into the more soluble compound of allantoin.  Our liver and kidneys are left to do the all-important jobs of purine breakdown and uric acid disposal, conducted respectively.

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Chronic Stress, Chronic Inflammation, and Disease

We all know that stress can cause ailments such as difficulty sleeping, muscle tension, changes in appetite, headaches, stomach problems, panic attacks, and prolonged feeling of sadness or worthlessness.  But, did you also know that stress can literally alter the cells in our body and lead to chronic inflammation and serious diseases?  Prolonged, overexposure to cortisol and other stress hormones can wreak havoc on the mind and body.  Chronic stress can reprogram the cells in our body and disrupt all of it’s processes.  A region at the base of our brain, the hypothalamus, is set off in the presence of a perceived threat.  In turn, this signals the pituitary and adrenal glands to release a surge of hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol.  Cortisol is the main hormone responsible for Continue reading “Chronic Stress, Chronic Inflammation, and Disease”
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This Is Your Brain On Turmeric……

Are we doomed for cognitive decline as we age?  Not necessarily.  There are plenty of healthy, thriving older adults pushing into their 70’s and 80’s with cognitive functioning as well as, sometimes even better than, younger adults.  Cognitive decline is far from uniform, with many variables in play.  However, 1 in 9 Americans will suffer with some level of decline by the age of 65, with 1 in 3 by the age of 85.

Where and how does it all begin?  We know that inflammation is at the heart of all disease.  Often times the signs of chronic inflammation begin with achy muscles and joints.  We find ourselves at the doctor being prescribed something specifically for that ailment.  What we need to be considering is how that inflammation could be affecting other parts of our body, as well.  We are programmed to treat each symptom individually, and as separate conditions, when we should actually be addressing the inflammation in the body as a whole before it continues to creep into and destroy other parts of the body.  What does this have to do with your brain? Continue reading “This Is Your Brain On Turmeric……”

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