Uric Acid and How It Works in Your Body

You might be wondering why specialists in foot health are concerned with uric acid, but if you’ve ever had a gout flare-up, you understand its significance. If you want to avoid this incredibly painful form of arthritis, it pays to understand the role that uric acid plays in your body; especially considering that the incidence of gout in the United States is on the rise.

To help you better understand the connection between gout and uric acid, the podiatry team here at Neuhaus Foot and Ankle presents the following information.

Uric acid and your body

When your body encounters high levels of purines (more on this in a moment), it produces uric acid to help break down these chemicals. Uric acid is essentially a waste product found in your blood, and under normal circumstances, the acid dissolves. Any uric acid that’s leftover passes through your kidneys, and you then expel it through your urine.

If the levels of purines in your blood are too high, your body produces more uric acid than it’s capable of processing, causing the acid to build up in your system. Also called hyperuricemia, this condition can lead to the formation of crystals or urate, which can make their way into your joints, where they can cause considerable pain. 

At that point, you experience a flare-up of gout, which typically attacks the joint in your big toe, though it can affect other joints in your ankles or knees.

Hyperuricemia can also lead to a build-up of crystals in your kidneys, where they can form kidney stones.

Controlling urate

If you have a history of gout, one of our first lines of defense is to put you on a low-purine diet. The most common types of food and drinks that contain moderate-to-high purine levels include:

While avoiding these foods and drinks can go a long way toward reducing the levels of uric acid in your body, diet alone may not be enough to control gout.

If you still experience gout flare-ups despite limiting your diet, we prescribe medications that can control the inflammation and help your body break down uric acid properly.

As well, certain lifestyle changes can make a difference in controlling the levels of uric acid in your system, such as losing weight.

Whether you’re struggling with gout or you’d like to avoid the issue altogether by controlling uric acid levels, contact one of our locations in Hermitage, Brentwood, Nashville, Mount Juliet, Waverly, Smyrna, Gallatin, or Lebanon, Tennessee, to set up a consultation.

You Might Also Enjoy...

5 Signs of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Your feet undergo a fair amount of abuse under the best of circumstances, but when you add an issue like rheumatoid arthritis (RA), things can get worse. Here’s a look at the signs of RA in your feet and how we can help.

How to Manage Neuropathy in Your Feet

Nerve damage in your feet, or peripheral neuropathy, affects at least half of those who have diabetes. Our goal is to help you to avoid permanent nerve damage in your feet through vigilant management.

Preventive Health Benefits of Custom Orthotics

Bunions, hammertoes, plantar fasciitis — these are just a few of the most common issues that occur in your feet. If you want to stay one step ahead of your foot health, custom orthotics are a great choice.

How to Prevent Nail Fungus Infections

As the temperature begins to warm, you can ditch the socks and boots and let your feet enjoy the fresh air. But the last thing you want is for a toenail fungus to force your feet back into hiding, and they shouldn’t if you follow these tips.

Can a Plant-Based Diet Help My Gout Symptoms?

The incidence of gout in the United States has doubled in the past two decades, and diet plays a significant role. Explore how a plant-based diet can prevent this painful condition from flaring. Read on to learn more.