Acupuncture, Botanical Medicine, Clinical Nutrition and Homeopathy for Gout TreatmentGout can be a very painful affliction as it has the ability to swell joints (often the big toe) into mean, hot protrusions that are excruciating when touched. It is a form of arthritis resulting from the body’s inability to completely break down uric acid, the byproduct waste from purine which is emitted when cells die. If the kidneys cannot eliminate all the uric acid or there is an abnormal buildup, it becomes released into the bloodstreams and this is called hyperuricemia. Excess uric acid is randomly stored in tissues as well as joints. Eventually, it crystalizes and expands resulting in extreme pain and if left untreated has been linked to diabetes, obesity, kidney and heart disease. Causes of gout include a diet high in purine rich foods, alcohol consumption, obesity, gender/age (more common in adult men) and genetics.

Target Approaches
Conventional medicine approaches gout through various pharmaceutical drugs that attempt to reduce the amount of uric acid being produced; break down formed crystals and/or reduce inflammation. Some of these medicines become lifelong prescriptions for chronic sufferers and have the potential for a variety of side effects including diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, headaches and hair loss. However, many people dealing with gout are often at their wits end having been through several painful attacks and will therefore forego side effects to avoid any more agony.

Naturopathic medicine offers an alternative choice that has the ability to target the root cause of gout and work from the inside out to relieve or possibly eliminate this condition. A combination of gout remedies using acupuncture, botanical medicine, clinical nutrition and homeopathy have been found to allow the body to embrace its healing mechanisms rather than try to tweak it into changing what the root cause is manifesting. Note: It is essential that these or any other recommended gout remedies only be prescribed, maintained and monitored by a professional naturopathic doctor so as to avoid contraindications as well as receive the most optimal care.

Scientific Stats and Examples of Naturopathic Gout Remedies

Acupuncture
A recent study of acupuncture for gout conducted by the Hospital of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University Medical Center found that:

“…six studies of 512 patients reported a significant decrease in uric acid in the treatment group compared with a control group,” and concluded that, “The results of the studies included here suggest that acupuncture is efficacious as complementary therapy for gouty arthritis patients.”

Targeted acupuncture points for gout all depend on each individual intake assessment. Conventional medicine rarely takes into account everything from tongue coating, various pulse points and pallor to the sound of one’s voice, white’s of their eyes and sleep patterns. These and many other subtle signs are clues on to how to proceed for the best possible gout acupuncture protocol. Clearing heat and dampness, stopping pain by dredging the channels, removing stagnant energy, dispersing phlegm, and regulating Kidney and Spleen function are primary goals of a thorough acupuncture treatment for gout. Here is an example of some possible points that may be used:

  • Stomach (ST36); He (Sea) point of the stomach channel; Spleen (SP3); the Yuan (Primary Spleen point) – These clear heat and dampness while strengthening the Spleen and Stomach.
  • ST40 – Reduces phlegm and dredges channels.
  • SP6 – This popular ‘crossing point’ of the foot strengthens Kidney and Spleen; clears heat; removes damp; regulates qi (chee – life energy) and blood; disperses stagnancy.

Botanical Medicine
A study by the University of Freiburg reports 50-70% pain relief amongst 250 male and female gout sufferers when a protocol of the herb devils claw was used. Note: Devil’s claw has blood thinning effects. All remedies must be used only through a naturopathic doctor’s guidance.

Many other botanicals hold potential relief remedies for gout such as:

  • Bromelain – For the reduction of pain and inflammation. Should be taken on an empty stomach.
  • Green Tea (caffeine-free) – The compounds in green tea contain antioxidants as well as immune boosting properties.
  • Turmeric – This is a powerful, natural anti-inflammatory.

Clinical Nutrition
The Journal of Functional Foods published recent research from Japan’s Hyogo College of Medicine that found polyphenols, a compound found in raisins, blueberries, lychee fruit, ginger and many vegetables may reduce excessive, systemic uric acid. Other foods that may help prevent or ease gout symptoms include;

  • Tart Cherry Juice – Associated with reducing uric acid as well as dissolving needle-like crystals embedded in joints.
  • Celery Seed Extract – Use this as an anti-inflammatory and monosodium urate (MSU) reducer.
  • Eggs & Nuts – Two foods low in purine.

Homeopathy
The American Journal of Homeopathic Medicine cited a small study regarding various remedies for gout. It concluded that:

“The study suggests that homeopathic remedies act rapidly in acute gout when the similimum [correct remedy according to the homeopathic law-of-similars [like cures like] is selected as treatment…The overall improvement of nine out of ten patients by more than 50% by Day 6 indicates that the homeopathic similimum is an effective treatment for acute gout.”

Possible homeopathic remedies that may be administered according to each individual gout presentation include:

  • Ledum– Swollen, purplish joints.
  • Rhus toxicodendron – Stiff, painful, swollen joints.
  • Bebis vulgaris – Joint spasms or twinges as well as kidney stones.
  • Bryonia – Pain associated with motion.
  • Belladonna – Intense, throbbing pain.

Suffering with gout can go on for years. Do not succumb to lifelong medicine that can tax organs and reap potential side effects before attempting a more holistic approach through a naturopathic doctor’s expertise.

Drink plenty of water to keep uric acid flushed out of the system; eat live, unprocessed foods being sure to avoid high purine triggers such as red meat, alcohol, mushrooms, asparagus, scallops, herring, turkey, liver and sugary drinks.

For a more detailed, professional assessment visit your local naturopathic doctor.

At Integrative Med Solutions, we will design an acupuncture and naturopathic treatment program that works for you.  In many cases, insurance covers portions of the acupuncture treatment. Allow us to support you to achieve optimal health.  To make an appointment or find out more about how acupuncture and naturopathic medicine can benefit you, please call our office at 914.337.2980 or CLICK HERE to schedule an online appointment.

*Please CLICK HERE to see a current list of In-Network Insurance Companies for Acupuncture that we participate with as well as insurance companies that commonly have Out-of-Network benefits. Please call 914.337.2980 or securely email info@intmedsolutions.com to verify your specific benefits. If you are emailing, please include your full name, date of birth and insurance identification card number.

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