It wasn’t until sometime in 2015 that my wife, Josie, found out that gout was the main cause of all the pain she was having. Well, okay, she also had other things bothering her, but they rarely caused her any pain. The Wikipedia description (from that period) of gout said gout is caused by high levels of uric acid in the blood.
The uric acid crystallizes, and the crystals deposit in joints, tendons, and surrounding tissues. Where does that uric acid come from? The kidneys, of course. What it means is the kidneys aren’t doing the jobs they’re supposed to do to the best of their abilities.
More people are being diagnosed with gout today than ever before. It was once called a rich man’s disease. It’s actually a “condition”, not a disease. Regardless, it has spread from the rich to the poor and in underdeveloped countries as well as the developed.
My mother-in-law and a brother-in-law were both diagnosed with gout in the Philippines. Josie was never diagnosed with it and it’s been the cause of most of her pain for years. My mother-in-law and brother-in-law were given dietary restrictions, restrictions that are hard to follow without a decent income. Josie has always kept a healthy diet going, so I think some of it may be caused by heredity.
The answer to the problem isn’t restricting what you eat or drink. The answer is drinking something you don’t normally drink. Adding that drink to your daily diet, as much as possible, will prevent gout from appearing or reappearing.
Years ago, Josie was put on bed rest by her doctor in the United States. Basically, due to back pain, she couldn’t get out of bed for any reasonable length of time. For two weeks. Until I forced her to drink nearly a gallon of cranberry juice at one time, nothing helped. She was taking pain pills and muscle relaxers until that day. After flushing her kidneys, the pain disappeared, and she was back to normal.
For longer than I can remember, a few years at least, Josie complained of a numbing kind of pain in her left arm. It usually occurred when she was trying to sleep. I suggested she should flush her kidneys again. I don’t know why I thought it might help. It was a hunch. Well, she did as I suggested and the pain didn’t return for months.
Josie saw more than three specialists in Phoenix (USA) and not one of them could figure out what the cause of her pain was. It turned out my hunch was correct, fueled by the symptoms my mother-in-law and brother-in-law were displaying when they were diagnosed with gout. Gout normally affects the big toe of one foot before anything else. Not in these cases. These all started in the left arms.
You don’t have to use cranberry juice to flush your kidneys. Any fruit juice with a lot of citric acid will do the job. Pineapple juice, orange juice and some tropical juices (like guava, my favorite) will do the trick just as well. It takes more than a half of a gallon, or more than two liters. You have to urinate a lot or it just won’t work.
Add a single glass of some kind of fruit juice containing citric acid to your daily diet and you may never experience gout. No, a soft drink with citric acid added cannot be used as a substitute.
Josie is taking vitamin C supplements. At first, it was because she had an oral infection. She stopped taking them after the infection went away and just recently started taking them again. This time, it’s to fend off the gout.
According to this source, vitamin C can prevent gout from occurring. According to this source, it won’t help with established gout. Regardless, Josie takes vitamin C supplements because she can’t get enough fruit juice for the amount of vitamin C she needs. She prefers pineapple juice. As long as she doesn’t eat certain types of fish and crustaceans, the symptoms of gout doesn’t seem to return.
If vitamin C doesn’t work, there are only two alternatives: Suffering or prescription medication. I hope it never comes to making a choice.
Originally published in April 2015 and updated to include vitamin C.