High uric acid in the blood, medically known as hyperuricemia, is common in some people. Produced from food and cellular breakdown, uric acid is filtered by the kidneys and is released by the body through urine. In excess, uric acid may form into solid crystals within the joints, a condition called gout. The following are the causes, signs and symptoms, and home remedies of gout.
Several causes can lead to an increase in uric acid. According to Mayo Clinic, one cause is the kidneys’ failure to adequately remove uric acid from the system. This is secondary to being over weight, consumption of foods that increase uric acids, drinking alcohol, having diabetes, and taking certain diuretics (medications that promote diuresis or urination). Other factors that can increase uric acid levels in the blood include genetics, hypothyroidism, immunosuppressive medications, niacin, obesity, psoriasis, purine-rich diet, and tumor lysis syndrome, which is characterized by rapid cellular release into the blood due to cancer or chemotherapy.
Signs and Symptoms
High uric acid levels in the blood leads to gout. As per Mayo Clinic, as cited by Live Science, the associated signs and symptoms include joint redness, swelling, and tenderness, along with intense joint pain that is severe in the first 12 to 24 hours and lasts for a few days to weeks. Also, the joint pain spread to other joints over time.
While anti-gout medications are available in the market to combat gout and high uric acid levels, home remedies can also be applied to manage the condition.
Apple Cider Vinegar and Lemon Juice
Apple cider vinegar and lemon juice are both common remedies for various body problems, such as high uric acid. According to Top 10 Home Remedies, apple cider acts as a natural cleanser, as it can help detoxify the body by removing waste products like uric acid. Also, it contains malic acid, which helps in uric acid break down and elimination. To add, it aids in the restoration of acid balance in the body, in addition to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
To prepare, as per the publication, the person adds a teaspoon of raw, unpasteurized, and organic apple cider vinegar to a glass of water. Then, the mixture is consumed twice or thrice a day. The person may also add up to two tablespoons of the vinegar to a glass of water. The remedy can be used until the uric acid levels decrease; however, it should not be taken excessively because it may reduce potassium levels and interfere with the action of the diuretic agents .
Conversely, lemon juice yields an alkaline effect in the body, helping neutralize uric acid. As a citrus, lemon is also rich in vitamin C, which also reduces uric acid levels in the body. To prepare, the lemon is squeezed into a glass of warm water. The mixture is consumed in the morning on an empty stomach. The remedy can be done for a few weeks.
Avoid Purine-Rich Foods
Another remedy for high uric acid is to avoid eating foods rich in purine, since they will further increase the acid levels in the body. According to Live Strong, purine is found in most foods and they break down, forming uric acid. As per the publication, examples of purine-rich foods include organ meat, sardines, herring, bacon, anchovies, and asparagus, among others.
High uric acid may lead to the formation of crystals or gout, which is very painful to the joints. Along with home remedies that can be done, uric acid can be managed through medical consult for proper assessment, planning, implementation, education, and evaluation.