For mindful gout sufferers, discovering natural remedies to lessen the frequency and intensity of a flare up is an on going quest. Some remedies work better for certain people just because we are all different.
Fruits and vegetables are typically added to diets to lower the risk of gout. However, some herbs are loaded with the same healthful properties as gout-fighting fruits.
Read on to learn specifically what makes these four herbs good for gout diets. (Listed in no specific order)
Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum)
The use of milk thistle for medicinal purposes dates as back to the 1st century Romans. Traditional medicine or herbal remedies believe it to support functions of the liver, kidneys, and gallbladder. Other claims suggest it helps with high cholesterol, diabetes, heartburn, indigestion, hangover, menstrual pain, and depression.
Silymarin is a unique ingredient in milk thistle seeds. It is a flavonoids with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that protect and regenerate liver cells. Milk thistle is usually recommended to people with hepatitis and cirrhosis.
How Is Milk Thistle Good For Gout?
Milk thistle is good for gout because it stimulates liver function by eliminating and defending against toxic substances like uric acid. Your liver may weaken due to the strain of excess uric acid in the body. Furthermore, chronic liver disease may lead to an overreaction to purines, thus, an overproduction of uric acid.
Besides silymarin, milk thistle contains other flavonoids (quercetin, kaempferol, taxifolin, and naringenin) with potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In fact, some of these flavonoids are also found in gout-fighting fruits like berries, grapes, cherries, and citrus fruits.
Milk Thistle Products and Supplements
- Sold as an individual tea, or in blends intended for detoxification.
- Powder from seeds may be infused with oils for topical washes, salves and ointments.
- Supplement products are available in tablets, capsules, powder, oral tinctures, and extracts.
Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
Licorice root has long been used for medicinal purposes in Chinese, Indian, Assyrian, and Egyptian cultures. Folk remedies include it to treat a range of conditions, such as asthma, malaria, bronchitis, hives, heartburn, stomach ulcers, insomnia, chronic fatigue and joint ache.
This herb is a potent source of flavonoids, nutrients, and vitamins, that boost antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity. It specifically provides vitamin E, B vitamins, phosphorous, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, selenium, and zinc.
Studies have concluded glycyrrhizin, a natural sweetener and active compound in licorice, increases mucus production to sooth stomach ulcers and lung conditions. Other studies suggest glycyrrhizin can help reduce body fat, fight infections, boost immunity and relieve arthritic pain.
How Is Licorice Root Good For Gout?
Licorice root is good for gout because of its antioxidant role in reducing uric acid levels. In a lab study subjects given a licorice extract each day for twelve days produced less uric acid compared to a control group not given the extract.
Anti-inflammatory benefits from licorice root may help ease pain, including joint pain. A cohort study reviewing 90 test reports determined 13 flavonoids and three triterpenes found in licorice were primarily responsible for anti-inflammatory activity.
A rheumatic arthritis study showed licorice may provide and enhance the pain relieving effects of NSAIDs and DMARDs (Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs for inflammatory forms of arthritis).
Another benefit of licorice root is its potential ability to improve the body’s stress response. Adaptogens, a substance in licorice, assists our bodies in reacting to physical or mental stress. It interacts with the nervous and endocrine systems to regulate the stress hormone cortisol.
Licorice is unique because it may help alleviate pain and swelling, plus have a calming affect. As people with gout know, frustration comes from every flare up.
Licorice Root Products and Supplements
- The root of the plant when washed and dried can be chewed.
- Many products do not contain any pure licorice; replaced by anise oil which has a similar smell and taste of black licorice.
- Licorice root is sold in many products, including herbal teas, candies, lozenge tablets, capsules, powders, creams and tinctures.
Chanca Piedra (Phyllanthus niruri)
Peruvian and Brazilian herbalists have used Chanca Piedra, aka “Stone Breaker”, for generations. This potent herb is in folk remedies to treat fever, inflammation, kidney stones, liver issues, indigestion, and diabetes.
The leaves, stems, and roots contain a variety of nutrients such as; vitamin C, vitamin E, lignans, tannins, coumarins, terpenes, flavonoids, alkaloids, saponins, and phenylpropanoids.
The abundance of these antioxidant agents help the body remove toxins and fight free radicals. The primary reason for its purported anti-viral, anti-tumoral and anti-spasmodic properties.
Chanca piedra promotes a healthy digestive tract and process, which leads to proper nutrient absorption and increased waste elimination.
A clinical study testing over 150 people with kidney stones, concluded chanca piedra helps prevent kidney stone development and flush calcium deposits. Another study in 2017, showed kidney stones decreased in size and number in most participants who drank chanca piedra tea each day for twelve weeks.
Overall, chanca piedra is a safe herbal remedy and does not cause significant side effects.
How is Chanca Piedra Good For Gout?
Chanca piedra is good for gout because of its properties to boost kidney function and alkalize urine. Due to its alkaline composition, it may help clear or prevent buildup of mineral and salt deposits it in the gallbladder, kidney or urinary tract.
Keep in mind uric acid and calcium stones tend to form in acidic urine. Consequently, ore uric acid is flushed out when urine is less acidic, or more alkaline.
The same study from 2017 confirmed the alkalizing powers of chanca piedra. Data showed uric acid levels increased in urine of subjects who drank chanca piedra tea daily versus the ones who did not. This suggests chanca piedra helps the body flush out uric acid.
Chanca Piedra Products and Supplements
- Chanca piedra tea is typically made from the leaves and stems.
- Many herbal tonics for detoxification include chanca piedra .
- Chanca piedra supplements are available in liquid extracts, capsules, and tablets.
Cilantro and Coriander (Coriandrum sativum)
Cilantro and coriander are two distinct parts of the same plant (Coriandrum sativum). Cilantro, the green stems and leaves, is an herb. Coriander, the light brown seeds, is classified as a spice. Both parts have a history of medicinal use dating back to ancient Persia, Greece and Rome.
Traditional remedies believe it to promote: antioxidant activity(cell health), cardiovascular health, bone health, pain relief, digestion, mood, normal blood sugar levels, antibiotic/antimicrobial activity and detoxification of toxins.
The plant contains nutrients and minerals that influence anti-oxidant activity. It’s no wonder why many herbalists regard cilantro as a “superherb”.
A 2015 animal study linked coriander seed extracts with pain-relieving effects. Researchers associate pain relief from the several flavonoids and compounds that stimulate antioxidant activity.
How is Cilantro and Coriander Good For Gout?
Cilantro and coriander is helpful to gout sufferers because of its ability to enhance detoxification, treat urinary tract infections and reduce inflammation.
A clean urinary tract and proper kidney function is necessary to flush out bacteria, toxic metals, and uric acid. Gout sufferers need to know kidney disease and gout are reciprocal, where one can cause the other.
This herb is good for gout because of antioxidant properties from phytonutrients, flavonoids, and phenolic compounds. One such flavonoid, quercetin, has shown to aid in lowering uric acid levels.
Cilantro and coriander Products and Supplements
- Adding fresh or dried cilantro leaves and coriander powder can liven up any meal.
- Tea blends are made and sold in traditional tea bags or loose leaves.
- The most available supplement forms are capsules, tinctures, detox teas and essential oils.
No herb is an instant remedy for gout. However, these four herbs are good for gout because their potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and detoxicating properties. Many of the compounds and nutrients found in these herbs are also in gout-fighting fruits like cherries, berries, red grapes and apples.
There are plenty of herbal products and proprietary blends containing these herbs. Starting with a supplement or a tea may seem small, but it’s a still adds to your defenses against the gout. Gradually, you can make more lifestyle and dietary changes which will help you become more GOUTPROOF!
Note: Herbal supplements are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for ingredients or efficacy. Only purchase supplements from trusted companies for safety. Before trying any supplement, always discuss with your doctor about interactions with medication and side effects.