For many of us, this year’s Thanksgiving day may look a little different. With traveling on an ‘as needed’ basis and many families avoiding large gatherings, you may find yourself in a world of overindulgence to make up for missing your loved ones! We encourage you to enjoy ALL the food you want this Thanksgiving, but while you’re at it, keep a close watch that you don’t create the perfect recipe for GOUT!
WHAT IS GOUT?
Gout, is a type of inflammatory arthritis, that occurs when uric acid levels in the blood become too high (typically due to dietary intake) and start to crystalize. These crystals typically form in the coldest parts of the body which for most of us overnight is our feet and more specifically our big toe.
Uric acid is the result of the breakdown of purines (chemicals that are found naturally in our bodies and in food). Some people develop gout because their kidneys have difficulty eliminating normal amounts of uric acid, while others produce too much of it.
GOUT AND THANKSGIVING
It seems that just about everything that has to do with Thanksgiving is one big gouty nightmare! If you struggle with gout and want to avoid any triggers this upcoming Holiday, here are a few pointers:
Try to avoid the following items:
- Turkey (especially organ meats) in large quantities
- Fatty fish
- Other meats (especially red meats)
- Creamy sauces
- All sweet sodas
Now I don’t know about you but, avoiding gout this thanksgiving may seem like you might as well just cancel the whole day! But if you are wise about how you approach this day you can combat gout before it shows up.
Avoid it Before it Strikes
Here’s how to avoid gout this Thanksgiving:
- Drink a pint of water when you get up in the morning before breakfast and an 8 ounce glass of water every hour of the day.
- Go for intermittent walks throughout the day. A 5 minute stroll around the block will do every couple hours.
- When it comes to the meal itself fill your plate up with vegetables first, then add the other heavy hitting items sparingly. As a general rule when it comes to turkey all the organ meats are far worse for you than the breast meat. This is the same for leg meat – the darker it is, the worse it is for gout as a general rule.
- Substitute the gravy for a low fat version or a different low fat dairy based gravy.
For many people Thanksgiving involves alcohol– after all it is a celebration! Simply switching from beer to wine will reduce your chances of getting gout this thanksgiving. Red wine is far less potent for your kidneys. Make sure you stay hydrated by drinking glasses of water throughout the day and in between alcoholic beverages.
Another major gout causer is stress. This year, there is an added layer of stress in everyone’s lives due to Covid-19. How you deal with stress could make all the difference between getting gout this Thanksgiving and staying happy, healthy and gout-free. Avoid any family spats and try your best to stay in a positive and calm mind-frame throughout the day.