Go to page content
Heather Hanks
Written by Heather Hanks

Reviewed by Dr Andre Budihardjo

Best Natural Remedies To Support Gout Treatment

Dealing with Gout can cause a lot of discomfort on a regular basis. Here are some natural remedies on how you can easy the pain and inflammations.

10Artboard 1

Gout treatment can be tricky. To date, there is no cure for the condition. This makes it even more important to find ways to manage pain and other symptoms.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) provides several home remedies for gout. These natural therapies can be done right at home and provide relief from pain, swelling, and inflammation.

Read on to learn more about gout treatment options that can help manage the condition when nothing else has worked.

How To Tell If You Need Gout Treatment

An elderly woman sitting on a bench holding her knee and experiencing arthritis pain
As a type of arthritis, gout may cause joint pain and swelling in the knees, joints, hands, wrists, and fingers.

Gout is a type of arthritis that causes sudden, severe joint pain. During a gout flare-up, it mostly attacks the big toe, though the pain can occur in the foot, ankle, knee, wrist, elbow, and finger joints. You will know it’s a gout flare when the skin on the affected areas turns hot, swollen, and red.

Gout can happen to anyone. The primary cause is high levels of uric acid in the body, a chemical compound in some foods we eat. When you consume too much food high in purine, it forms uric acid crystals around the joints, fluids, and tissues. This causes the joints to swell up and become inflamed, causing pain.

There are several risk factors for gout:

  1. Being male
  2. Being in menopause
  3. Suffering from diseases like congestive heart failure, hypertension, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and poor kidney function
  4. Being obese
  5. Consuming certain medications
  6. Drinking alcohol, especially beer
  7. Consuming foods or beverages high in fructose or sugar
  8. Having a diet high in purines (red meat, organ meat, anchovies, sardines, mussels, scallops, trout, and tuna). Purines would be broken down into uric acid by the body.
  9. A family history of gout 

Are There Ways To Prevent Gout?

When gout flares up, the pain can last days or weeks before it improves. There is no permanent cure for this condition. Hence, gout can come back, and the cycle of pain will repeat. 

It may take days, months or years, but gout might reappear. Preventing it from happening altogether is the most effective way to save yourself from the pain.

Avoid gout by

  1. Maintaining a healthy weight
  2. Limiting your intake of purine-rich and sugary foods
  3. Restricting your alcohol intake
  4. Staying hydrated
  5. Exercising regularly without putting pressure on the joints
  6. Not smoking 

We can also prevent gout by taking medication to reduce uric acid levels, such as allopurinol, febuxostat, or colchicine. Treating underlying diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and thyroid disease, will also help to avoid gout.

Western Medicine Gout Treatment 

A woman's leg being elevated and inspected by a doctor
Resting and raising the affected limb can help treat gout pain.

To this date, there is no cure for gouty arthritis. As soon as you feel the pain, you should seek gout treatment immediately to prevent joint damage.

Gout can also develop into a more serious problem known as chronic gout, which may affect the kidneys and cause kidney failure.

Various choices of treatments are available to manage the pain:

  1. Ibuprofen or, in more severe cases, steroids
  2. Rest and raise the limb
  3. Apply an ice pack to the affected joint and keep it away from sheets or blankets when sleeping at night 

Natural Gout Treatment Options

Besides the three traditional treatments listed above, alternative ways exist to relieve the symptoms. 

Naturopathy 

Many patients have been looking toward naturopathy to treat their gout. Like Western medicine, it agrees that natural remedies for gout should include lifestyle and dietary changes that can help treat the condition.

Avoid purine-rich foods such as animal organs (liver, kidney, sweetbreads), certain seafood (anchovies), legumes such as beans, especially soybeans, and vegetables like mushrooms, spinach, asparagus, and cauliflower.

“Patients should exercise frequently,” advises TCM Physician Chew Siew Tiang, since obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol make one more susceptible to gout.

Naturopath Ketki Vinayachandra suggests maintaining sufficient fluid intake, as this keeps urine diluted, promotes urate excretion, and reduces the risk of kidney stones.

Naturopathy also recommends specific herbs such as Devil’s Claw. A 2021 review of the herb has shown that there may be strong clinical evidence that Devil’s Claw is effective as a remedy for gout.

It is recommended you consult a naturopath before taking the herb to determine the right dosage for your condition.

Traditional Chinese Medicine

Red Korean ginseng pictured on a brown mat
Red Korean ginseng has been shown to help treat gout due to its powerful anti-inflammatory actions.

Gout is the result of internal and external factors such as Wind, Dampness, Heat and Cold. These four are considered pathogens and when mixed, they affect qi flow and blood in the body’s meridians. When flow is disrupted, it results in inflammation, pain, and gout.

In TCM, gout treatment includes herbal remedies and changes in diet and lifestyle to lower uric acid levels. The goal is first to balance out the elements of the body. When the body is in harmony, gout can be easily managed.

Before you try any TCM gout treatment, it is important to visit a licensed physician so they can recommend suitable treatment. TCM would recommend acupuncture or herbs such as: 

  1. Psyllium seed (Che Qian Zi): A 2018 study discovered that psyllium seed is effective because it contains xanthine oxidase (XOD) inhibitors to reduce uric acid. 
  2. Lycopodium (Shi Song): Following a 2022 study on the herb’s effects on birds, lycopodium has been considered a treatment option for joint arthritis. 
  3. Achyranthes root (Niu Xi): A 2012 study published in Strait Pharmaceutical Journal has stated that achyranthes root can promote the excretion of uric acid, which might make it a good treatment for gout. 
Fenugreek may help alleviate gout by dispelling Heat and Dampness.

TCM also believes that fenugreek (Fen Bi Xie) might help reduce the effects of gout. Additionally, to dispel Heat and Dampness, TCM advises following a diet consisting of winter melon (Dong Gua), cucumber (Huang Gua), barley (Da Mai) and green beans (Lu Dou).

Try to stay warm and dry hands and feet after washing to prevent Wind and Dampness.

Finally, you can try taking supplements that disperse the impacts of outside pathogens. According to one study, Red Korean ginseng can help treat gout by reducing inflammation pathways. Research shows that Lingzhi and Cordyceps mushrooms can help reduce gout pain by regulating inflammation levels and reducing uric acid, respectively.

Use Multiple Approaches To Manage Gout

You don’t have to deal with the pain of gouty arthritis alone. Be mindful of your diet and cultivate a positive attitude, as stress can trigger gout attacks at home or anywhere without warning. Remember, conventional or alternative gout treatment must be taken after a careful diagnosis. Contact your doctor or physician to get the right treatment for you. 

This is an adaptation of an article, “Routed by Gout,” which first appeared on the Eu Yan Sang website.

References

  1. National Health Service. 2017. Gout.  
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2015. Gout.  
  3. National Center for Biotechnology Information. 2021. From Bush Medicine to Modern Phytopharmaceutical: A Bibliographic Review of Devil’s Claw (Harpagophytum spp.)
  4. National Center for Biotechnology Information. 2018. Antigout Effects of Plantago Asiatica: Xanthine Oxidase Inhibitory Activities Assessed by Electrochemical Biosensing Method
  5. International Journal of High Dilution Research. 2022. Lycopodium as a treatment for Urate Deposition (gout) in birds: case report.  
  6. National Center for Biotechnology Information. 2020. Chinese herbal medicine for gout: a review of the clinical evidence and pharmacological mechanisms
  7. Food and Agricultural Immunology. 2020. Red ginseng extracts as an adjunctive therapeutic for gout: preclinical and clinical evidence.
  8. StatPearls. 2022. Gout.
  9. International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition. 2004. Ganoderma lucidum (‘Lingzhi’); acute and short-term biomarker response to supplementation.
  10. Frontiers in Microbiology. 2018. Cordycepin, a Characteristic Bioactive Constituent in Cordyceps Militaris, Ameliorates Hyperuricemia through URAT1 in Hyperuricemic Mice. 

Share this article on

Was This Article Useful to You?

Want more healthy tips?

Get All Things Health in your mailbox today!

Subscribe to our newsletter

Related Articles

Meghan markle min scaled
General Health

6 Celebrities Who Use Alternative Medicine To Look Great

Does your favorite celebrity use alternative medicine? Check out this list of famous people who use natural remedies to look and feel their best. Then consider trying them out for yourself.

Read More

The contents of the All Things Health website are for informational and educational purposes only.
Our website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.