Gout is a painful condition to live with – and one that can lead to irreversible joint damage if left untreated for extended periods of time. Many people use medications to lower uric acid levels and help ward off another gout flare up, but not everyone can tolerate uric acid-lowering medications. For those people, and others like them who choose not to use prescription medications, there are several alternatives to choose from for fighting gout naturally.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant vitamin that reduces inflammation. Gout attacks are caused by deposits of uric acid crystals that form in joint spaces and the pain comes from the body’s response to these crystals. When uric acid crystals form, white blood cells enter the area and release chemicals that cause inflammation and pain. Vitamin E is a great gout medicine because it reduces inflammation and may help to prevent joint damage during a gouty flare.
During a gout flare, the affected joint becomes inflamed and free radicals form. Selenium is an element and natural medicine that helps reduce free radical formation and the resulting inflammation. Supplementation of 100 micrograms a day of selenium is ideal for maximizing the element's benefits.
Vitamin C helps to lower uric acid levels so it may be helpful for people prone to gouty flares. A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine showed that a greater intake of vitamin C was linked with a lower risk of gout. Additionally, vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that fights against the damage caused by free radicals.
Folic acid is a B vitamin that inhibits an enzyme involved in uric acid synthesis. Taking it as a supplement can lower uric acid levels, which should reduce the risk of a gouty flare and the pain that is experienced when a flare up occurs.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids found in fatty fish and flax seeds. Studies show they help reduce inflammation, increase bloodflow and thin the consistency of blood. It's because of these properties that omega-3 fatty acids may be especially helpful for treating inflammatory conditions like gout. Although many omega-3 supplements come from fish, other sources of the essential oil make it possible to avoid fish products but still receive the full benefits of omega-3.
The Bottom Line
Prescription medicines are often more volatile than the conditions they're trying to correct, and gout medicines are no different. People suffering from gout should try any or all of the above methods for reducing the pain and inflammation associated with the disorder - any one or a combination of several could be all it takes to win the bout against gout naturally and prescription drug free.