Too much uric acid in your body can lead to urate crystal formation in your joints causing gout. The symptoms — redness, heat, swelling, stiffness, inflammation and very great pain — are caused by these needle-like crystals. The condition of high uric acid levels in the blood is called ‘hyperuricemia.’
Uric acid is produced during your body’s natural metabolization process. When chemical compounds called ‘purines’ breakdown during this process, uric acid is produced.
Usually, your kidneys take in the uric acid, process it, and then excrete excess through your urine. Unfortunately, under certain conditions, either too much uric acid is being produced in the first place, or, your kidneys cannot deal with ‘normal’ acid production efficiently enough. When one, or both of these occur, you are left with high uric acid in the body, eventually leading to a gout attack.
So, one of the causes of too much acid in the blood, is kidney damage or kidney disease. And there are certain other conditions that can also lead to elevated uric acid; for example liver disease, some cancers, low thyroid functioning, pre-eclampsia in pregnant women, even obesity.
Certain medications can also lead to hyperuricemia. These are things such as warfarin (to thin the blood), aspirin, niacin, diuretics and some drugs for treating lymphoma, leukemia and tuberculosis. Also some immunosuppressant drugs.
And the purines mentioned above, also exist in our foods at different levels. Foods such as fatty red meat, game, organ meat, some fish, shellfish and poultry, etc. can have high to very high levels of purines in them. Alcohol, especially beer, is also a trigger for high acid. So a high purine diet could be producing just too much acid for the kidneys to handle.
Please look around the website for tips and suggestions on how to lower your uric acid levels and prevent gout. There are tons of natural remedies to help eliminate the symptoms of a gout attacks, as well as to prevent future attacks. Please pay close attention to the articles on low-purine gout diets for gout-prevention.