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The Gout Dugout.Issue #032.The growth of natural remedies; a natural anti-inflammatory; cherries.
August 05, 2010
Welcome to the August 2010 issue of the Gout Dugout newsletter. The ten minutes' read that I hope gives you a couple, or more, useful gout ideas.
THE ONWARD MARCH OF NATURAL REMEDIES
This isn't a gout story, but natural gout remedies are the most viewed pages on www.best-gout-remedies.com. Only colchicine gout treatment, among the drug medications, appears in the site's top ten and I suppose it's because people want to know what its side effects will be, and just as importantly, how low the dosage can be. So I thought this item about natural remedies would interest you.
A couple of weeks ago my wife came down with a virulent attack of rheumatoid arthritis in both her ankles. She is only under 50 but she has an arrhythmia, a fatty liver, a touch of diabetes and now this. She's a long way from the days when she was a semi-finalist in Miss Philippines, and had a dinner and dance date with a very famous U.S. politician of the 1970's. (He, I'm glad to say is still alive, in his eighties, and from her account of this, he loves broccoli, the super anti-aging food that's good for gout).
And this was PAIN, although not quite on the scale of gout pain. The doctor prescribed diclofenac sodium and the stronger Celebrex, and within a few days the pain and inflammation subsided although they haven't gone totally yet. Nothing very unusual about this and well done Celebrex.
And the naturals are
What did surprise me was the battery of natural remedies the doctor then came up with. My wife would need to eat ginger, take 1,000 mg of vitamin C, (not the recommended 60 mg RDA of some countries, but the full monty of some nutrition experts), 1,000 mg of EPA + DHA omega-3 fish oils, 400 I.U. of vitamin E, not eat vegetable oils, have a teaspoon of olive oil a day, eat pineapple, don't eat too much of dairy products, and take glucosamine, and chondroitin plus MSM (which makes it better). Food should be only fresh, nothing packaged. And nothing made from grains - rice or flour.
What is surprising is that 20 plus years ago I very much doubt if all this would have been recommended. Robert Atkins' Health Revolution book of 1988 - I still have my copy - is partly about his natural remedies for various maladies which in those days were very novel. But it also came across clearly in this book that Atkins felt he had to defend his approach, and defend it hard, which he did.
In 1988 there weren't as many health food shops and the amounts in the bottles seems to have crept up in many cases. Even some of Robert Atkins formulas had much lower amounts of vitamins, than for example in his Vita Nutrient Solutions book, which was published 10 years later. And back then, for dealing with inflammation, Atkins would have recommended all the above, except perhaps the partial ban on dairy products, which I have to say I don't understand myself.
A fillip from FILLIP
Study the fish oils and insulin reduction treatment for natural pain relief for gout and inflammation on the website (FILLIP) and you'll see that I too think fish oils (but at a much higher dose than EPA + DHA of 1000 mg, and only pharmaceutical grade) and avoiding vegetable oils, plus the Zone diet will help a lot with gout - and there are testimonials and that study where gout attacks were reduced or eliminated for at least a year. There are Barry Sears' theories behind it all, and our lady doctor in the Philippines seems to have absorbed a lot of what Sears writes, or learnt it elsewhere, because she knew that eicosanoid balance is at the heart of all the inflammation, and the auto immune reactions (of rheumatoid arthritis), in Sears' theory. That's why she didn't want my wife to eat vegetable oils and advised a teaspoon of olive oil daily.
But not pineapples
So, I was in almost full agreement with the doctor. However, I don't think eating pineapple will do any good. The theory is that pineapples contain bromelain, which is anti inflammatory (shown in a number of studies) but my information which in this case I'll stay with, is that almost all the bromelain is in the stalks, not unfortunately the fruit. So you need a bromelain dietary supplement with added quercetin. The bromelain packaging should state a GDU number. This is the amount of enzyme activity - 2,000 per gram is a good number. Or, quercetin with added bromelain. Bromelain aids quercetin's absorption.
Click on a link below to a bromelain product at www.mothernature.com - a Solgar product. This is the kind of bromelain you need I think, as an anti inflammatory. And whilst you are on the mothernature.com site, go to the home page to look at some serious discounts. If you don't live in the U.S. compare local prices with these and cost the shipping. The U.S. has by far the cheapest vitamins I've seen.
Solgar Bromelain - 500 mg- 30 tab
Of course no-one, including me, thinks that natural remedies can solve every problem and certainly not every gout case. A brother of an ex business partner once spent three hours with me explaining how he had got a cure for his cancer with a macrobiotic diet, including the seaweed, if I remember correctly, but unfortunately he hadn't.
Natural gout remedies can't get uric acid down enough for all gout cases, and alkalising (alkalizing) the blood and body doesn't always work either. Getting to your natural weight and virtually giving up alcohol, which you must do to stave off gout for good, isn't easy either. But once uric acid is down enough and you're getting a gout cure in the sense that attacks have not occurred for say, a year, and you have to keep it down, there's a
good case for many gout sufferers to try them instead of staying on a medication. And if you can keep it down naturally, what a reward that will be, especially in your older age.
ZYFLAMENDStaying on the subject of natural medicines, Zyflamend is a natural anti inflammatory product, I hadn't heard of until quite recently. A few months ago I had an email from a gout sufferer in the U.S. who said he had got rid of 90% of his gout pain from a single over-night flare up, with folic acid and a natural anti-inflammatory - Zyflamend. When I looked it up I found of course that's it's a compound of a whole host of natural anti-inflammatory substances, some of which are well researched.
A few experts like Robert Atkins and Joseph Pizzorno, co-author of The Condensed Encyclopedia of Healing Foods have said that folic acid, if taken in large enough quantities, will lower uric acid levels , but I'm not sure how it does it. You definitely need a doctor to prescribe the amount for you, and we aren't talking about the 400 mcg or 800 mcg in multi-vits or solo bottles. So the doctor needs experience of using it, at levels of 10 mg-40mg daily.
But back to Zyflamend. What's in it? To be good these things should be compounds of studied anti-inflammatories, and made carefully with the best quality ingredients. You can often guess this from the packaging alone, and you often need too. I suspect Zyflamend is in the quality category. I am convinced this makes a big difference - whether they really work or not. Just as in some countries you must buy branded drug medications (even if over-priced) because the much cheaper generics are not nearly as likely to work.
Unlike Flamasil or GoutCleanse, Zyflamend doesn't attempt to lower uric acid, just inflammation. It has the usual anti-inflammatories like turmeric and ginger, other herbs like holy basil,
rosemary and oregano, and substances like Baikal Skullcap, which is sometimes mentioned as useful for gout, and Hu Zhang for its resveratrol. And a few others.
Look it up Enter Zyflamend into an internet search box to read more. To find out if you can get it in the country you live in, if not the U.S., enter Zyflamend and the country's name. I know it can be bought in Canada and Britain, and in Australia maybe from a classified ads website. Otherwise you'd have to buy it from the U.S.
I shall have to get some for my wife. If any reader has experience of Zyflamend - you know I'm always interested to know so that it can be passed on.
ANOTHER CHEER FOR CHERRIES
I suppose one tiny consolation about getting gout is that you quickly learn about the health benefits of cherries. In the world of natural gout remedies, we think first of all about their lowering uric acid effect. It's been found in studies, and it's a useful reduction.
If you have gout there's a strong argument that it will lead you to diabetes, heart disease of some kind, kidney disease and kidney stones. And if you have insulin resistance, that can cause gout, and gout can probably part cause it.
There are gout sufferers who have said that cherries get rid of the inflammation, as well as the pain. Recently another small study (10 overweight or obese men and women) on cherries was published. This time they weren't using cherry juice for gout. But they were looking for cherries effect on inflammation, heart disease and some cancers. The researchers used tart (sour) cherry juice this time - just a glass (8 fl.ozs.) a day for 28 days in all. Not a lot.
At the end of the study there were reductions in some (not all) markers of inflammation, and triglycerides,(-10%) and VLDL cholesterol,(-15%) the dangerous kind.The latter two are among the markers of insulin resistance and heart disease of course. This means the TG:HDL cholesterol ratio fell too, (-17%) which is desirable. It should be under 2.0. Total cholesterol and insulin resistance didn't improve. They only drank a glass a day for a month. But, as with other studies on cherries, there's enough here to make it worth while drinking cherry juice, or eating them, or buying the cherry supplements.
And cherry juice, along with milk and orange juice are the three top drinks for gout. After water or ionized water of course. All have been studied in gout, and all show some benefit. For my high
uric acid, pass me the cherry juice please.
If you want a free pH food chart with 45 alkalizing recipes, click on this link to phionbalance.com and when the home page arrives, the download link for the chart is on the right. You can print out the food chart, so that you can take it with you when you go shopping for food.
John Mepham BA.(Econ).
P.S. You may distribute this newsletter freely and free-of-charge, providing any links in it remain unchanged and it remains intact. Partial copying is not allowed.
NB. The contents of this newsletter contain medical information, not medical advice. Please always discuss gout remedies with a doctor or other health care professional before implementing any treatment.
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