Yes, adding baking soda to your diet can help manage gout.
More Info: Gout is a disorder that results from the improper metabolism of uric acid of the body that afflicts about one percent of all Americans. This results in the creation of monosodium urate crystal deposits in the soft tissues, such as the joints. The deposits are in the form of needle-shaped crystals causing pain in areas such as the big toe, ankle, knee, wrist, elbow and fingers.
How Does Baking Soda Work for Gout?
Although there are no clinical studies to back the efficacy of using sodium bicarbonate or baking soda as a treatment for gout, it is nevertheless recognized as a home remedy because it alkalizes the blood by removing hydrogen ions. This causes the blood to hold more of the uric acid without causing it to crystallize. Because of this, less of the crystals deposit in between the soft tissue of the joints lessening the inflammatory reaction in effect lessening the acute gouty attacks. Aside from decreasing the deposition of crystals, it is claimed that baking soda has the ability to alkalinize urine, thus able to secrete uric acid more efficiently.
Sir Alfred Garrod’s Discovery
The idea of using baking soda as a treatment for gout is based on a discovery of Sir Alfred Garrod, who was known in London as the physician to then Queen Victoria, on the effect of reducing the alkaline state of blood on gout. According to Sir Alfred Garrod’s “The Nature and Treatment of Gout and Rheumatic Gout”, which was published in 1859, reducing the alkaline state of the blood likewise lessens its ability to retain uric acid.
Most of the medications used to treat attacks of gout focus on relieving the pain and inflammation associated with gout. The medications include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, colchicine and corticosteroids.
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Garrod, Alfred Baring. The nature and treatment of gout and rheumatic gout . London: Walton and Maberly, 1859. Print.