Gout and Alcohol

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I've had 5 attacks in 6 years although my previous to this was 2014 (now Jan 2017). I've coped pretty well with alcohol consuming no more than 2 x pints of beer on alternate days and similarly with wine (maybe a little more wine). Having been recently diagnosed with Coeliac disease I stopped beer and drank the equivalent in spirits (4 units alternate days). BANG, instant gout but everyone says beer is by far the worst? Can I believe ANY of the literature?

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  • Posted

    Alcohol in general will cause gout. Beer is the one that causes it to come on the fastest. There are a lot of factors to consider, like the quality of the spirits. Cheap stuff will make your body more acidic causing the environment in your body to neutralize itself, the result is gout for sufferers of high uric acid. Now that you've been diagnosed with celiac and have a predisposition to gout maybe you should be more careful with consuming alcohol. Maybe it's time to give it up.

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    • Posted

      Yes, well getting old seems to be just about giving up all the things that have given you pleasure throughout your life and I'm loathe to sit in front of the telly 18 hours a day just yet. These were regular drinks as served in my local football club bar. Maybe it's time to give up living.

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    • Posted

      That's a strange outlook on life at least to me. Because alcohol has recently been in medical news as being a poison to the body. I think we all know that alcohol is a poison even if you're not ready to admit it. Millions of people have been living life without alcohol, now you're telling me you want to give up on it because you can't drink. Maybe it's time to seek a therapist. Because clearly your mind is not in its right frame of state.

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    • Posted

      Why not go to the local football club and drink a non alcoholic drink? It wasn't suggested you give up all pleasures - just one. But if alcohol is triggering your gout, you will be bought to heal .

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    • Posted

      It is my non scientific observation that those that have most trouble with gout are those who have a too close relationship with alcohol. If giving up alcohol, except for the occcasional beer or a drink at Christmas, then perhaps one should consider if the underlying issue is not alcoholism. Too much alcohol over many years will make a 50 year old feel like a 65 year old and a 60 year old like 75. If not, assuming one has been reasonably lucky, gout could be the only problem (my case).
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    • Posted

      I was in the music industry for a while in my youth and apart from lactose intolerance gout is the least of my ailments. I'm hopeful of 70 but probably not much beyond so I DO count 62 as old. One honest doctor did tell me I'm ten years older than I should be in a roundabout way. You have to be honest with yourself in these things, being "positive" is rather a pointless attitude? 

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    • Posted

      No that's rubbish, I still walk as much as poss. (gout permitting) but 4/5 miles is my limit nowadays maybe twice a week with other arthritis and blown cartilege. My weight is 78 kilos at last count about right for 5'11". Liver and kidneys a bit dodgy, lungs not the best (all lifestyle). Heart is good as far as I know BP normal. This all raises the prospect of a wheelchair if I live too long. I'll be happy to go at 70 and may even decide to take it on myself. I would say that "some" bodies maybe aren't designed for longevity, genetically.

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    • Posted

      I think you are right Phillip. Some people at 60 are going on 45 and others are going on 75. I have a friend who is 99 and had nothing wrong with him at all till he started to go blind at 97. In your case could you not try swimming for exercise to not put weight on the knees?
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    • Posted

      Hi Philip

      Sorry to hear about your gout.

      Like you I suffer from gout usually after prolongued bouts (over weeks) of too much beer and red wine.

      I am 60 years old. I love a drink, but if someone gave me a choice of never having gout again if I never had another drink I would take it with both hands. I have given up drink virtually completely to try to stop gout reoccurring and cycle to help keep my blood flowing.. I cycle to work six days a week (a round trip of 20 miles) as my knees wont allow much walking or other sports. I probably have one small drink every month or so, although I feel sure that I could drink more without the gout coming back. My point is that having to determine whether your life is worth living because you have to give up drink is a really negative way of viewing things. Staying off booze has enhanced my life yet again. I once gave it up for three years when I was in my 30's and never felt better but I was enticed back to it because like you I enjoyed a drink. However it shows what an incredibly strong drug it is when its allure is so tempting. I knew I was better off without it yet I couldnt give it up. Viewing things as being better without booze is a start. If you can stay booze free, and keep your sugar intake down for just a couple of months your whole life would probably change for the better. At 62 your life without booze could just be beginning. I know its difficult as I give in to a drink occassionally but if you cannot go just 2 months of your remaining years without booze then you really need to speak to somone and get help. You will never look back. Dont mean to preach but I wonder sometimes how much will power people have if they cannot stop something that they know is doing them harm. I am speaking as someone who has drunk a lot knowing this.

      Remember its easy to make excuses about what you can and cannot do. The real people get up and do it. Be one of them.

      Remember you can always go back to being in pain and drinking, you just need to give it a try. Think about all the drunken people who never get gout. They never get a wake up call to tell them life is better if you do things differently. You have had that call and been offered a great chance to see life as it should be. 'What a wonderful life'

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    • Posted

      Colin

      This is excellent advice, as a recovered alcohol dependent you are in a very good position to give it. People just don't want to accept that the research shows clearly that alcohol will give gout.

      Once alcohol is removed, if gout persists it can be sorted with allopurinol.

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    • Posted

      Hi Rustygecko

      Im not and wasnt an alchoholic, I like to think I was a good social drinker, but like everyone who likes a drink I know how difficult it is to give up.

      Cycling past a pub on my way home from work in the summer and wanting to stop to have a cold beer is  difficult to do.

      I know for me, beer and red wine are my particular catalyst to gout. Especially after drinking over a long period before hand.

      Lets be fair not much else can do what a beer does in certain situations, 

      At those times I would say to philip go for it, have a beer, just moderate the rest of your life for the better. I refuse to start taking Allupurinol and because my bouts are infrequent I probably wouldnt be prescribed it. I now only get gout about once every three or four years and that is usually because I have over abused. Even now Im learning that I cannot behave like I used to when I was a kid and get away with it.

      But then again I could many things I cant do now.

      However I think its a general life thing anyway. We need to stay fit and care about what we eat and drink as we get older as it certainly affects us more in all sorts of ways. Having gout has made me realise this.

      Some people need a heart attack to open their eyesI

      have friends who dont get gout who do nothing exept watch telly They would die if someone told them thay had to walk to fetch a newspaper or couldnt have a beer every day. In a way I feel a bit luckier than them by having gout as its easy to become a couch potatoe without a wake up call. I have been an active sportsman all my life but Im sure i would be quite a slob now if I didnt have the sword of Damaclese (gout) hanging over me.

      Anyway

      Hope Philip realises how lucky he is. This could be the start of something new for him

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    • Posted

      Thanks Colin I do realise how lucky I am, my gout is fairly minor compared to a lot of people and "Yes" I could give up alcohol easily. The thing is that I don't want to. The thought of going to the pub or football and standing there with a cup of tea seems absurd. I don't suppose I have been over even the drink/drive limit socially for ten years or more so I don't have a particular problem with booze. It's just my nature that I won't give up anything until I actually have to, it's more to do with getting old than anything. Before my Coeliac disease diagnosis I knew my limits and stuck to them but the boundaries have been altered by going Gluten-free so I will have to figure out the new ones. I just thought it strange that spirits had a worse effect on me than beer despite what I'd been told and the latest attack was on my "good" foot not the usual gout point. Really I just want to continue a varied a life as possible until the eventual demise and not sit in front of the TV waiting for the end. If I have to take a few risks with pain then I expect I will still do that unless or until it becomes unbearable. 

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    • Posted

      Hi Philip

      I always think about the few friends I have who dont like drink. When we are together they always seem to have a much better time than anyone else.

      I go to the pub sunday lunch and to football and meet my mates and they have got used to me drink thgings other than booze. Its very much a state of mind. Peer pressure initally does help.

      I freely admit that sometimes when Im being good I could murder a pint Anyway you dont have to give it up completely. Have a drink. Just dont go mad. Finding out what the main foods and drinks are that affect you can take years but overall its the abuse of them that is the main thing. Moderation, and exercise is the key. Dont know what your pain was like but I could have happily chopped off my foot to stop it so I would say try to cut down now because every attack gets worse. Best of luck

       

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    • Posted

      Hi Colin

      Two observations

      a) your attacks are so infrequent that you are really "gout-lite", and you're probably dealing with it the right way (mine was much worse)

      b) my only reservation would be to watch your level of blood urate, as you can have high urate and not get gout - but the slow silent damage continues.

      Good health!

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    • Posted

      Colin, this is yet another thing I've been told that isn't true "they always get worse". Up until this latest attack I would have agreed but this latest on the other foot has been "mild" like the first one I ever had so these days I take everything with a pinch of salt. My first 2 attacks were mild and the second 2 severe. Mild = very painful, painkillers work a bit, sleep is possible every night(at least a bit). Severe = extreme pain, painkillers useless(no matter how many you take), sleep only possible after about 3 days of being awake and then only for an hour or so at a time. If my attacks ever get severe all the time I WILL give up everything prob. life as well because continuing like that seems utterly pointless. I think I can say I'm content with the 62 years so far and happy to continue as things stand but there is a point (for me) where I draw a red line. 

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    • Posted

      Unfortunately Philip, gout - the pain - is a symptom of hyperuricemia (High blood uric acid). Having an high level of blood urate damages not only the joints (gout), but more insidiously the kidneys and blood vessels (and more), thus increasing the patient's chance of cardiac event or serious renal issues - and more. It isn't just about the occasional pain in the foot which can be taken care of with a few pain killers and a bit of stoicism.

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