by Earlie Doriman
It was in the middle of 2005 when I learned from my doctor that I had a gouty arthritis. But before that I remembered one day when my right toe was so painful and swollen yet I never had any inkling if it was something more serious than just an ordinary sprain or an unprovoked injury. I did not bother to consult any medical practitioner but rather went to a neighbour who is a popular ‘hilot’ in our place and asked him to fix my sprain.
He tried to massage my toe and declared that I’ve got some strained muscles and guessed that my sports had something to do with it.He explained so many things without minding that he was slowly killing me with the excruciating pain each time he squeezed and pull, then wiggle and waggle, then twist, and play with my toe. I was shouting and crying inside but managed to keep myself composed, convincing myself that the pain would go away after the ‘hilot’. After some final rituals and massage, he assured that I would be all right in the morning. On the contrary, the following day proved to be more miserable, the pain seemed to amplify and the inflammation appeared to expand. The ‘hilot’ was regrettably wrong in his unscientific diagnosis.
If I have to make a tally of my gout attacks, I believed it’s more than what my fingers could show. Mostly mild pains, but some I considered acute, and in many occasions my doctor reprimanded me with my eating habits. So what have I eaten that triggered my gouty? Well, I love what my doctor wanted me to avoid or at least eat in moderation. For one, I couldn’t resist the tempting colour and smell of adobo and ‘pork humba’. I would always kid what’s life without these in my meal? How about my cravings for peanuts? So here I am now, a human package with gouts in my joints.
Seriously, if one has gout like me, it is recommended to avoid high-purine foods. Regulate the intake of meat items with high-purine contents that include but not limited to pork, beef, or lamb, most especially ‘organ meats’ like liver, brain, kidney amongst others. As much as possible stop drinking alcoholic beverages particularly beer, or at least reduce the amount. Fresh beans or dried beans must be limited if not totally avoided. High consumption of seafood like anchovies, herring, mussels, cod, trout, haddocks, salmon, or even sardines are considered to contribute to the risk of gout attacks.
According to Alvin Hopkinson, a leading researcher in the area of gout treatment and natural remedies, some drinks that may seem healthy should also be avoided or consumed moderately, like coffee, chocolate, tea, or even cocoa.
As I have mentioned in the first two parts of this article, diet is just one of the factors that trigger gout attacks, but I find this most crucial and thus becomes the focus of my interest. Knowing these would hopefully help us all who have the same gouty disorder. Are you ready to say bye bye to joint pains?