One of the easiest and cheapest things you can do to reduce and prevent gout flare ups is to drink a lot of water.
I mean A LOT.
Drink until you pee clear.
You will be getting up to go to the toilet almost every hour, but the process of continually re-hydrating will help flush out waste from your body, including excess uric acid which is the cause of gout.
If you’re in the middle of a gout attack, drinking a lot of water can speed up your recovery.
If you’re trying to prevent future attacks, drinking lots of water can help in keep your uric acid levels in check to avoid uric acid crystal build up.
Drinking lots of water is hard…
So it turns out drinking a lot of water is actually pretty hard.
Tasteless, not thirst quenching and straight from the tap can slightly cold at best.
…and the alternatives are a slippery slope
When you lose interest in water, it’s easy to turn to the likes of Coke, Sprite and Beer. All full of sugar and terrible for gout.
“Diet”, “Zero” or “No Sugar” drinks are no better.
Not only are they filled with chemicals, the sweeteners trigger a dopamine response in your brain, conditioning yourself into thinking that sugar is good and seeking out the next “hit”.
That’s when it become easy to think because you are being good and not cutting out sugar in your drinks, you can consume more sweet things like desserts, bakery products and chocolates.
And so the downward spiral begins…
…but the solution is easy!
Make your water enjoyable to drink
There are a few things you can do to make drinking lots of water more enjoyable.
The first thing you can do is drink chilled water. This makes it more refreshing, more thirst quenching and give it a little bit of interest.
Keep a large water jug in the fridge all all times and refill it before it gets empty. Better yet, keep two in the fridge so you always have one chilled and ready to go.
A handy option can be a fridge with the water outlet on the front, although some fridges don’t product cold enough water.
Ice cold water helps, but it’s still not overly exciting.
Adding flavour will put some interest in your water, however be careful what you use.
There are a lot of water flavour enhancers on the market which are filled with sugar and artificial sweeteners and will do more harm than good if you’re trying to fight off a gout attack.
Sugar is one of the many enemies of gout.
Look for a natural water flavour additive such as VitalZing.
VitalZing WaterDrops (no affiliation) are made from natural fruit extracts and contain no sugar.
Only a small amount is needed to add a nice subtle flavour and they won’t trigger a gout attack.
Adding a bit of sparkle to your water intake will really kick the interest levels up a notch.
The easiest way to do this is by using a Soda Stream system.
Buy a Soda Stream unit plus a 3 pack of 1 litre bottles so you always have ice cold, fizzy water in the fridge ready to go.
Just don’t be tempted by the many Soda Stream flavourings on offer. Most a full of sugar, don’t taste anywhere near as good as the real thing and won’t help with your gout problem
Chilled + Flavoured + Fizzy – the process
The process I use to make water fun again is as follows:
- Take 3 x 1 litre soda stream bottles
- Fill them with tap water or ideally filtered water
- Stick them in the Soda Stream and fizz them up
- Add 3 x quick squirts of VitalZing WaterDrops to each bottle (don’t add any more than this – only a tiny amount is needed)
- Slowly and carefully turn the bottles upside down and back a few times to mix it all in
- Pop the bottles in the fridge and start drinking once cold
Once I’ve emptied a bottle, I refill it starting from step one again to make sure there is a constant supply of water on hand.
Handy hint: don’t add the flavour and then fizz it up. It makes quite the mess!