Bob Holmes, Somerset, United Kingdom
Suffered agonising attacks for a number of years as frequently as three times a week at its worst. The usual medication did not work for me. I read up about the alkaline/acid divide between food and drink and then reasoned that as gout/arthritis is an acid condition that perhaps sodium bicarbonate (baking soda/bicarbonate of soda) would work and it does.
I have probably overdosed as I did not measure out the amount but now take 2.5ml/3g of it. As it is salt, it can raise blood pressure as various articles warn. Told my doctor about its effects but he was unaware. I still have mild attacks, usually because I haven't taken the daily dose but no crippling attacks for 4 years.
Comment And see the warning from SH, below. Check with your doctor first !
MH, Toronto, Canada
MH discusses his use of sodium bicarbonate (bicarbonate of soda/baking soda) and suggests potassium citrate as an alkaliser could be better. But he has cautions about both.
Your gout newsletter is one of my favourites. Not only is it informative, it's also very interesting as an example of how the Internet, through wide communication, is leading the world closer to some basic truths. In your case, removing so much of the disinformation about gout and, possibly, leading to the ultimate cure for this crippling condition.
A couple of points. You mention sodium bicarbonate as a possible treatment for gout. I have used it and it does help but has the drawback of side effects if taken in any significant quantity. The excess sodium contained causes, at least for me, dizziness which I interpret as an electrolytic imbalance as the body tries to adjust. Who knows what health issues continued usage may result?
A better salt may be potassium citrate as many are already deficient in potassium. Upon my return from Africa, and finding no source in Canada for my beloved Happy Day Sour Cherry Juice, I ordered from IHerb a product called Alkaline Minerals made by pHIon. Mainly potassium citrate, it also contains small quantities of other salts and is designed to shift the body's pH to a more alkaline level. A teaspoon a day is recommended but I find less than 1/2 such, added to my coffee pot has been sufficient to do a wonderful job on gout and even other joint pain.
Now, a caution on this product. When I first took it the relief was so rapid, and so welcome, I continued dosing for a week or two and then abruptly stopped, figuring I had solved my problems. Within a day or two a sharp gout attack occurred, something I can only attribute to some very arcane and little known aspects of uric acid metabolism and storage. So, as with all chemicals, caution is needed in usage and dosing. But, it is a wonderful product which I think deserves some attention for your readers and possible commentary back. And, not only does it relieve gout it also appears to provide some relief to those unusual joint pains we get as we age.
SH, Leeds, United Kingdom.
SH has a warning
I tried Bicarbonate of Soda once - without consulting my doctor -unaware that it can raise blood pressure (I have moderately raised BP). That night, I thought I was going to have a heart attack. I woke in the early
hours with my heart pounding faster than ever before. My BP monitor just wouldn't register, and when it did about 2 hours later, I was shocked to read what my pulse had registered. I know that I am sensitive to salt, so hardly ever use it, so this reaction really frightened me.
My advice to would-be users is:
DO NOT USE IF YOU HAVE RAISED BLOOD PRESSURE. AND CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR FIRST
More about gout and baking soda.....
A visitor from Canada.
I have had had gout for about 35 years. Attacks became more and more frequent over the years until I was getting 2-3 major attacks a year, as well as pains in my feet and ankles, which I also suspect were gout.
I was amazed the first time I used Baking Soda - it seemed to reduce the time taken for a gout attack from a week or two to a matter of hours or a couple of days. Also, after the first time, I did not have another attack for about 18 months.
I found it to be an effective addition to my usual arsenal of "cures". At the first inkling of an attack I would take a level teaspooonful of baking soda in water before going to bed and then first thing in the morning, then 1/2 a teaspoonful every 3-4 hours during the day until the pain was gone. I also start drinking large volumes of water (filtered to reduce the chlorine content), eat lots of celery, drink black cherry juice, no sugar, no meat or fried foods. I'd live on salads, soups and a couple of slices of bread. I also took indomethecin 3 times a day (25mg). The Baking Soda seemed to enhance all these.
Effective though it was I must warn all gout sufferers that it was not a cure, as it did not prevent my developing Tophi which started during the period I was using baking soda - though I do not believe that it in anyway caused tophi which are the outward manifestation of long term chronic gout.
I had been avoiding taking any drugs for many years and came to a conclusion that there are no natural cures for tophi, so am now on Allopurinol which appears to reducing the tophi a bit and has resulted in no further gout attacks (at least after 9 months).
I should also add that the baking soda effect seemed to reduce after a couple of years (or maybe the gout was just getting worse) and after 5 years I had a vicious attack even with BS which lasted several weeks and decided me to finally resort to Allopurinol.
TELL OUR VISITORS WHAT YOUR EXPERIENCE HAS BEEN
There is a tremendous interest in the bicarbonate of soda for gout remedy (baking soda). The baking soda page is among the most visited on this website, much more popular than any of the pages devoted to drug medications. And there are a few online polls that point to bicarbonate of soda for gout as the most helpful of all the natural remedies for gout.
Although it's a hot gout topic, there's a dearth of information about what gout sufferers' experiences with baking soda have been. With online polls, people are simply voting on a form, not describing their experiences. Whilst the poll scores are interesting and encouraging, what readers also want to know most, is what others have said about gout and baking soda. What others say may tell them what they can expect, which is more interesting.
You won't find any baking soda for gout studies. Go to the world's largest English language medical database, ask for gout and baking soda studies, and there's nothing which tests the baking soda remedy among study participants.
Yet we are talking about a cheap, relatively safe substance that's been a gout remedy for over 150 years. Many people are very enthusiastic about baking soda when they describe how it helped them deal with one of the nastiest kinds of pain known to humankind.
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Will your contribution make a difference? It certainly will. www.best-gout-remedies.com receives a large number of visitors every day (and in a year from more than 100 countries and territories). Like you, they're looking for gout solutions. As mentioned above, one of the pages a large percentage of them head for is the gout and baking soda page.
They are hungry for information about baking soda (bicarbonate of soda). You can throw them some tasty morsels, or a full meal, depending on how much you can say.
Something helpful is missing. This baking soda experience page, describing your and others' experience, will help to fill that gap. As mentioned, there's a lack of gout and baking soda studies, yet in mid 2009 baking soda was featured in a study.The study was related to gout in a first cousin sort of way - baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) helped trial patients suffering from kidney disease. If the kidneys can't excrete uric acid well, its level will rise.
Baking soda came through this trial with flying colours (colors). There's a description of this
on the baking soda page.
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John Mepham, Editor and Publisher, http://www.best-gout-remedies.comRemember, if you're planning to use baking soda for gout, always consult a doctor before using baking soda. For just one of many reasons, baking soda contains a lot of sodium which might adversely affect your blood pressure.