CBD for Gout - Can It Help?
Around 8.3 million people in the United States have gout (6.1 million men and 2.2 million women). So, it’s safe to say that a lot of individuals turn to prescription medications to seek relief from the pain associated with this disease. Although there are lifestyle (dietary) choices you can implement to prevent the onset of symptoms, others, like me, may be left wondering if CBD can help. In today’s blog we are going to cover what gout is and what research says about this topic. If you are interested in learning more, keep reading!
What Is Gout?
Gout (or gouty arthritis) is a form of arthritis that can affect anyone. Pain and inflammation present when there is too much uric acid that crystallizes and deposits in the joints. Uric acid is produced during the normal breakdown of purines. Purines are naturally occurring and, according to MedlinePlus, are often found in foods such as liver, anchovies, mackerel, dried beans, peas and beer. Also, gout is considered to be chronic, meaning it is a lifelong disease.
Typically, uric acid dissolves in the blood and travels to the kidneys, followed by excretion through urine. However, if your body does not remove enough uric acid or produces too much of it, a buildup of crystals can occur forming sharp, urate crystals in a joint or surrounding tissue causing pain, inflammation and swelling. Medications that block uric acid production called xanthine oxidase inhibitors (XOIs) are typically used in the treatment of gout but can produce undesirable side effects such as nausea, vomiting, headache, dizziness and drowsiness.
- Intense joint pain: Often affects the large joint of your big toe, but can also affect the ankles, fingers, elbows, wrists or knees.
- Lingering discomfort: After severe pain calms, some discomfort may last for a few days or weeks.
- Joints: Lumps, swelling or stiffness
- Physical deformity or redness: Also common
What can increase an individual’s risk of developing gout?
- Diet: A diet rich in meat, seafood, sugary beverages and/or certain alcoholic beverages such as beer may increase your risk of developing gout.
- Obesity: When you are overweight, your body produces greater amounts of uric acid, in addition to an increased difficulty passing it.
- Medical conditions: Such as high blood pressure and chronic conditions such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and heart and kidney diseases that have gone untreated.
- Family history: If a family member has gout, you are at risk of developing it.
- Age and sex: Men have a more prominent risk of developing gout, typically occurring between the ages of 30 and 50. Women have a lower risk. However, it is possible for a woman to develop gout, typically occurring after menopause.
- Recent surgery or trauma: Can increase your risk of developing gout.
There are preventative measures you can take to lessen your chance of developing gout. These include staying hydrated, limiting or eliminating alcohol consumption, eat low-fat dairy products, limit intake of fish, meat or poultry, avoid foods high in purines and maintain a healthy body weight.
Can CBD Help with Gout?
CBD research is still in its infancy, however, because gout is an inflammatory condition and cannabinoids aid in the reduction of pain and inflammation, it makes sense CBD may be beneficial as an adjunctive therapeutic agent in the treatment of gout.
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