Reduce Uric Acid Naturally
Protein is vital to human health – but how much is too much? Excessive protein can mean acids build-up in the body. So, can you reduce uric acid naturally? Is it a case simply of eating the right sources of protein? Largely, it is. Your aim should always be to have a healthy, balanced diet and to combine it with sufficient levels of physical activity.
When uric acids levels are too high, you’re at a greater risk of developing painful conditions such as gout and kidney stones. Happily, it’s relatively easy to control these levels in ways that are safe and natural. We’ll tell you how.
What do you know about uric acid?
The decomposition of chemicals known as purines – found in foods like liver, herring, anchovies and sardines – is the primary contributing factor to the production of uric acid. There are vegetables, too, that contain purines. Studies show, however, that these are not worrisome. They don’t negatively affect the body, nor do they increase your risk of gout.
When cells die, uric acid is recycled. This process helps to protect the blood vessels. It’s the job of your kidneys to filter it from the blood and ensure that it’s excreted in the urine. This acid is also released in faeces, to a small degree. If your body isn’t able to regulate levels of uric acid, it can accumulate in your joints, tendons and internal organs – your kidneys, especially.
Gout can occur as a result of hypertension, heart conditions or kidney disease, it’s true. Elevated levels of uric acid, however, are a common cause of this debilitating illness.
So, what, exactly can you do? Heredity does play a part in the way your body deals with excess acid in the bloodstream – but so do lifestyle factors. Frequent indulgence in alcohol, obesity and diets high in detrimental purines are also huge factors. You should also exercise caution if you take diuretics or immunosuppressants; if you’re undergoing radiation therapy or chemotherapy or if you suffer from hyperthyroidism or psoriasis. These things can contribute to how your body regulates uric acid – and symptoms of abnormality are difficult to detect.
Recipes to reduce uric acid
- Have an apple after lunch and dinner. Easy, eh? Don’t peel it, though. Just give it a good wash. This simple habit can keep your body healthy, as apple peel is replete with vitamin C. The malic acid in apples is particularly healthy. It’ll help detoxify your body and regulate its acids.
- Choose cherry juice – and drink it daily. You only need about two tablespoons per day to benefit from cherry’s flavonoids. These compounds are what give cherries their gloriously deep colour. Cleverly, they also help eliminate excess uric acid. Seems life really is a bowl of cherries.
- Bypass purines. If you like red meat (this includes pork and lamb) and alcoholic – whether together or separately – rethink your diet. To avoid a build-up of acid in your joints, don’t eat these foods more often than once a week. Instead, replace them with foods that are lower in fat and harmful purines. Treat yourself to wholegrain rice, whole wheat bread and natural soya yogurt.
- This is one cliche that you should heed. Make sure that you drink 8 glasses of water every day. It’s one of the best habits you can have, as it will flush bacteria and toxins from your body. Plenty of water will make easier work for kidneys, too. Just the opposite happens if you’re eating to much salt or consuming too much caffeine.
- Every two months or so, consider a comprehensive detox. Such an exercise helps to eradicate crystals formed by uric acid. Part of your regime should include the following elixir: Add half a tablespoon of baking soda to a 1/4 litre of water and drink throughout the day. Be warned, though, that this isn’t recommended for anyone suffering from hypertension or renal illness.
- Eat artichokes! They are excellent diuretics, so help to reduce uric acid naturally. You’ll find a cavalcade of recipes that include artichokes, but you can enjoy them boiled. Add some lemon juice and you’ll be in heaven. Don’t forget to drink the water that you used to cook them.
- Another notorious ally in the fight against excess acid are onions. They are proficient at cleansing the body and preventing an array of health issues. Peel two onions, chop them roughly and boil them. Once boiled, let cool. Add the juice of a lemon and sip a few cups a day.
- Who’d have thought that something as delicious as strawberries could be such an effective remedy for gout? Well, they are – and they make delicious work of lowering uric acid levels. If you don’t fancy eating them, you can make an infusion of their leaves.
- Potassium rich foods should also be included in your gout-fighting diet. This element improves kidney function and prevents crystal formation in response to excess uric acid. Where will you find potassium? It’s all around you! Here are just a few ideas to get you started: bananas, leafy greens (such as spinach and chard), raisins, prunes, potatoes, watermelon, strawberries and apricots. Combine your potassium with complex carbohydrates such as those found in fruits, greens and whole grains (brown rice, oats, barley).
- If you’re really serious about avoiding uric acid accumulation, you’ll completely eliminate foods that are sweetened with high fructose corn syrup. This stuff is the basis of a lot of fizzy drinks – and even some juices. Check the label. Opt for water or pure juices that are free from additives.
- Take advantage of apple cider vinegar. It’s got countless uses around the house, so it will never go to waste. As for its relevance to today’s topic, use it as a condiment or as an ingredient in homemade salad dressings. There’s plenty of evidence to support its ability to reduce uric acid. The magic lies in its acetic acid and high potassium content. If nothing else, you can easily add two tablespoons of vinegar to a glass of cold water and help yourself to two glasses a day.
- To reiterate: avoid diets high in animal protein. If you’re relying on them for weight loss, please weigh the benefits of being slimmer against the risk of developing gout or kidney stones. Steady, healthy weight loss based on a whole foods diet and regular exercise is much more sustainable.