If you ever suffer from a gout attack, you’ll find out pretty quickly – because you’ll probably use up every single one of them – and maybe a few you didn’t even know you knew!
Lucky for you, letting loose with some salty language actually can help you cope with pain.
But when it comes to gout, there are a few things you shouldn’t bother with – and one of them is the steroid drug that’s been backed by a new study. More on that in a moment.
First a very quick look at gout in literature. Charles Dickens’ creative genius has been praised by fellow writers for comedy, prose style and unique characterisations. On the other hand, Oscar Wilde, Henry James, and Virginia Woolf complained of a lack of psychological depth, loose writing, and a vein of saccharine sentimentalism.
The term Dickensian is used to describe something that is reminiscent of Dickens and his writings, such as poor social conditions or comically repulsive characters, which could be caused by the heavy gout pain in his left big toe. For example, the ailment features in the Pickwick Papers.
But, back to modern times. Researchers claim prednisolone is “just as effective” in treating those painful gout attacks as the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) painkiller indomethacin or ibuprofen, but don’t be too impressed.
The study of prednisolone didn’t even include the use of a no-effect placebo (a sugar pill), a basic tenet of good science! And the pain relief results between the treatments were so identical that even the lead author admitted that it just might have been what he called “the process of natural recovery” at work.
Now, anyone who knows anything about scientific research could tell you that the only way to say for sure would be to include a placebo group.
Which, for reasons that are beyond me, they didn’t.
Don’t be blinded by bad science. If you’re going to recover “naturally” anyway, you shouldn’t have to expose yourself to the risks and side effects of drugs.
And when using steroids, you run the risk of anything from headaches and dizziness to sleep disturbances, muscle weakness, vomiting, irregular heartbeat, seizures, extreme mood changes and confusion that are sufficiently bad that you could lose contact with reality.
Here’s another four-letter word for that kind of treatment: N-O-P-E!
I want to give you something better… something that will kick in right away… and that can even safely PREVENT a gout attack from happening, if you do it right.
There’s one delicious natural remedy that can do all of those things at once: cherries.
You see, those painful gout attacks come on when uric acid crystalises and crowds around a joint, usually a big toe. But cherries are packed with anti-inflammatory phytonutrients called anthocyanins that can break up those crystals.
Sadly, cherries are expensive in Thailand. But weigh up the cost of them against that of tablets and consider which you prefer.
In a 2012 study, either popping around 30 cherries or knocking back a glass of cherry extract during an attack cut the risk of a future flare-up by more than a third. Add 2000 milligrammes of Vitamin C and it’s a pleasant and effective cocktail! If all that doesn’t work, take Allopurinol.
Just be sure you use cherry extract, not cherry “juice” — which, in most cases, is actually a blended drink containing little cherry and a whole sugary mess of other things.
And remember: Never toe the line!!