You might have heard the term ‘uric acid’ but do you know what it is? This is basically a waste product produced inside the body. It is filtered out through urine but sometimes, its levels are so high in the body that some concentration of it remains inside. Low levels of uric acid can be tolerated but when the levels increase, it can cause hyperuricemia which leads to gout(a form of arthritis). Thus, it is important to regulate uric acid levels in the body to prevent its serious health repercussions. If you ever find out about increased uric acid in your body, here are nine ways to reduce uric acid in the body.
What causes increased uric acid in the body?
Uric acid is released from foods that have purine. When you consume purine-rich foods, uric acid is produced. Some foods have high levels of purine, that if you consume, would produce more uric acid in the body. While kidneys conduct the detoxification process and eliminate uric acid from the body, higher concentrations are not easily flushed. They remain in the body and cause troubles. Gout is type of arthritis that is caused due to increased uric acid levels(hyperuricemia). It leads to acute pain in the joints when urate crystals accumulate there. It can also lead to acidity in urine and blood. Apart from purine consumption, the other causes of increased uric acid in the body are:
- Kidney disorders
- Diabetes mellitus
How to reduce uric acid in the body?
Here are some proven home remedies to reduce uric acid.
#1 Limit purine-rich foods
The first step to reducing uric acid is cutting down the source of uric acid. As mentioned earlier, uric acid is produced in the body by purine. Thus, you need to eliminate purine from your diet. Pork, turkey, organ meats, mutton, green peas, cauliflower, mushrooms, dried beans, etc. are some foods that you need to strictly avoid.
Foods That Control Uric Acid Levels
Let us tell you some foods that can help in regulating uric acid levels in the body. These are:
- Apples: These have malic acid that helps in neutralizing uric acid in the blood. People who have high uric acid are advised to eat apples.
- Apple cider vinegar: Apart from the other health benefits of apple cider vinegar, it also helps in controlling uric acid levels. Just add 2 teaspoons of ACV to one glass of warm water and drink. Have it 2 times a day to control uric acid.
- Cherries: You must have never thought that cherries can aid this condition but they do. These are loaded with anthocyanins that have anti-inflammatory properties. These prevent crystallization of uric acid to urate thereby preventing its accumulation. Besides, cherries also neutralize the acid in the body to reduce pain.
- Berries: Start having strawberries and blueberries if your uric acid levels are high. These are loaded with anti-inflammatory benefits to decrease pain and inflammation.
- Fresh vegetable juices: High uric acid can be treated if you drink fresh juice of cucumber, beetroot and carrot juice.
- Lemon: Citric acid is helpful in controlling uric acid as it dissolves it and prevents the levels from increasing. Have lemon water twice or thrice a day. Along with this, you must also have vitamin C-rich fruits like oranges, kiwi, guava, tomatoes, etc. to disintegrate uric acid.
- Green tea: It is rich in antioxidants that help in lowering uric acid levels while reducing the risk of gout.
#2 Add more fiber to your diet
Eating more fiber can help in controlling uric acid concentration in the blood and urine. It also helps in balancing insulin and blood sugar levels to prevent the risk of diabetes. In addition to this, consuming fibre keeps you full for a long time thereby aiding unnecessary binges and overeating.
#3 Drink more water
Water is you best friend when it comes to tackling health problems and especially uric acid issues. Water helps in eliminating toxic elements from the body faster. Therefore, you must drink a lot of water to boost kidney functions and get rid of uric acid.
#4 Avoid sugary foods and beverages
Sugar is not good for people with uric acid problem. It has fructose that can cause increased uric acid in the body. Therefore, limit your sugar consumption be it sugary foods or drinks. Also, check for added sugar in the food product label to not have anything that may contribute to increased uric acid levels. Even packages of fruit juices contain sugar to sweeten them. Thus, avoid refined sugar as much as possible. Naturally sweet foods are okay but it is better to reduce sugar consumption. Similarly, switch aerated beverages and smoothies to reduce sugar intake.
#5 Lose weight
Overweight or obesity is a risk factor for increased uric acid levels. If you have gained weight lately, you must work out to reduce it. The scientific reason behind this is that fat cells release more uric acid as compared to muscle cells. Therefore, by cutting down fat, you are closing a potential gateway to uric acid release. Also, extra weight increases the workload on the kidneys and they may not be able to eliminate uric acid. Thus, reducing weight is the best option. However, that doesn’t mean to start crash dieting. Lose healthily and gradually. You may also consult a nutritionist for the diet plan for effective weight loss.
#6 Balance insulin levels
If you aren’t diabetic, get tested for it. Chances are that you might have prediabetes condition which is causing the uric acid increase in the body. People with type-2 diabetes have a lot of insulin in their blood which causes excess uric acid production in the body. This affects the uric acid release as well. Thus, you must get yourself tested for diabetes to prevent its onset.
#7 Avoid alcohol
Stop consuming alcohol if you are seeing symptoms of increased uric acid or gout. The reason behind this is that alcohol causes dehydration which affects the detoxification process. Your kidneys need to function extra in order to filter all the uric acid. The absence of proper hydration causes them to work improperly and this leads to increase in uric acid. Alcoholics are prone to uric acid and gout problems especially if they don’t drink enough water.
#8 Manage stress levels to control uric acid
Stress is also a contributing factor to increased uric acid levels. It may not directly cause that but it can worsen the existing situation. Therefore, it is suggested that you practice mindfulness techniques to lower down stress levels and aid uric acid reduction. Here are some suggestions for you:
- Sleep properly for 6-8 hours. If you are unable to sleep, use a sleep balm.
- Eat your dinner at least 2 hours before going to bed.
- Do not use any digital device at least one hour before sleeping.
- Do not consume caffeine or alcohol at night.
#9 Check your medicines
You may not know but your medicines and other health supplements might also contain ingredients that cause uric acid buildup. This leads to excess acid in the body. Generally, diuretics, aspirin, niacin, immune-suppressing drugs and cancer drugs cause elevation of uric acid in the blood. It is better to talk to your doctor if you take these. They may suggest alternatives that don’t affect uric acid levels.
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