Can Gout Be Caused by Stress?
Yes, stress, or any extreme emotional state, can trigger gout.
More Info: Gout, a form of arthritis, is caused by an excess secretion of uric acid in the bloodstream. Uric acid, a by product of the body's digestive and waste systems at work, is usually dissolved in the blood and then passed out of the body through the kidneys. When the body secretes too much or fails to dispose of enough uric acid, the uric deposits travel to the extremities of the body. The body increases the production of white blood cells to fight off the uric acid which causes the affected areas to become inflamed.
Health Impact of Stress
Stress can negatively affect the body's normal functions including the digestive and waste systems. Stress has also been shown to deplete vitamin B5 from the body. Vitamin B5 helps the body to excrete excess uric acid from the body. Therefore, stress may trigger a gout attack.
While it is impossible to completely eliminate stress from life, a person can minimize its effects by meditation, prayer, or even exercise. Diet can play a big role in limiting the harmful effects of stress and gout. Incorporate foods that contain unsaturated fats and a high concentration of fatty acids into your diet. Since stress depletes vitamin B5 from the body, taking vitamin supplements may also help stave off a gout attack. Gout is a serious condition that can cause long term damage to joints and tendons. If gout is left untreated itmay also lead to heart and kidney disease.