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Although there are over 100 types of arthritis that plague Americans, according to “Harvard Health Publications,” one form in particular causes excruciating pain in the feet. Gouty arthritis has several causes, including a diet high in animal fats and protein. The disease manifests mostly in the joints of the feet and hands and is debilitating. Fortunately, there are certain foods you can add to your diet to help relieve the pain of gouty arthritis in your feet. Always inform your health practitioner before making changes in your diet to treat serious conditions.
Gout is caused by deposits of uric acid crystals in the small joints of the hands and feet. Uric acid is one of the final byproducts of protein digestion, especially purine-rich proteins. One of the nicest things you can do for your feet if you suffer from gout is to eliminate these proteins from your diet and replace them with low-purine proteins. Avoiding red meats, organ meats, shellfish and poultry should go a long way toward providing some relief from your pain. In their place, eat foods like fish, soy, tofu, legumes and low-fat dairy products, advises the University of Michigan Health System. These low-purine proteins are less likely to break down into uric acid and crystallize in your joints, causing pain.
Whole Grains and Fiber
Whole grains and foods high in natural fiber do not aggravate symptoms of gout, according to the University of Washington Department of Orthopedics. In fact, high-fiber foods can improve digestion time and help waste materials like uric acid move more rapidly through the system for elimination. Pasta, baked goods and cereals made from whole grains like brown rice, barley, oats and buckwheat are necessary for a healthy diet. Some people can eat whole-wheat products, and these too are an excellent source of natural fiber; however, if you have wheat sensitivities or allergies to gluten, avoid all wheat in your diet.
In addition to whole grains, starchy root vegetables provide lots of healthy fiber and carbohydrates as well as potassium and other nutrients that may prevent the formation of uric acid crystals. Include foods like sweet potatoes, beets, winter squash, plantains, turnips and carrots in your diet to help reduce gout symptoms.
Special Medicinal Foods
A few very special foods have medicinal effects and may be useful in stopping acute gouty arthritis attacks and prevent future problems. Everyone responds differently to these foods, some being helpful and others not making any changes in their symptoms. Try each suggestion and give it some time to test the effects on your pain. More than one of these foods or groups of foods may be helpful, so incorporate the ones that are helpful in your diet daily.
Apple cider vinegar is recommended to help create an alkaline environment in the body, helping to prevent the formation of uric acid crystals in the blood and urine, say Dr. Robert O. Young and Shelley Redford Young, authors of “The pH Miracle.” Foods high in vitamin C and antioxidants are reported to help reduce arthritis pain in the feet. Add oranges, lemons, grapefruits and high-C vegetables like peppers to your daily menu. Pineapple is high in the anti-inflammatory enzyme bromelain, says the University of Maryland Medical Center, making it an excellent addition for a gout-fighting diet. Include foods high in potassium to help make your urine more alkaline, preventing the formation of uric acid crystals, recommends “The pH Miracle.” Try adding bananas, lemons and cantaloupe as well as low-fat dairy products. Drink tart cherry juice, advises the University of Michigan Health Center to stop acute gouty arthritis attacks and prevent future attacks.