Gout and Healthy Feet

Gout and Your Feet

Take care of your feet if suffering from gout

Your feet have about 26 bones and a complex framework of muscles, ligaments and tendons. With every step you take, your feet absorb the full impact of your full body weight keeping you upright and balanced.

Did you know that the health of your feet can be indicative of your overall health? Having stiff joints can indicate arthritis, tingling or numbness could mean you have diabetes. Swollen feet can mean kidney disease or heart disease. It is very important to have healthy feet. Your feet are the foundation of your body after all.

Suffering from gout can cause all kinds of complications if one is not careful and one thing’s for sure, you want to keep your feet healthy and strong. I bring this up cause a recent study indicates that gout sufferers aged 45 and older are more likely compared to those that don’t have gout, to have lower but not upper extremity dysfunction. They are more likely to walk slower than average for their age.

The study also showed that those who suffer from hyperuricemia, had also poor performance in the lower extremities as in their feet. The way the researchers measured lower extremity function included repeated chair stands, standing and balancing, and a 4-meter walk test. This study should wake us up to the fact that we can suffer a similar fate, if we fail to keep our feet healthy and strong as much as we can.

Tart Cherry Extract for Gout

The importance of healthy feet

People with diabetes also have this issue where they need to take care of their feet. Diabetes often causes problems with feet and legs. It can get so severe that it can result in getting their leg or foot amputated. Among those diabetes sufferers aged 45 years or more are at ten times more risk of losing a leg or foot to amputation compared to people without diabetes. Those suffering from gout and diabetes should be very careful.

What happens is that over many years of gout attacks in the big toe and other areas of your feet, your foot or leg slowly wears and tears, slowly breaking down. Blood flow is also reduced which makes it harder for your body to heal from injuries.

Potential symptoms that you can experience with your feet include feeling a tingle, burn or hurt, foot odor, the skin of your feet can become dry and/or cracked (which I’ve experienced), you may experience a fungus infection such as athlete’s foot that can appear in between your toes or have fungus in your nails (like I do presently and fighting it off with my podiatrist), you may not feel cold or heat very well losing your sense of touch, the color and the temperature of your feet may change, as well as your foot’s shape. All these symptoms will obviously slow you down and limit your mobility.

A few tips is to always to examine your feet on a daily basis usually after a bath or shower. Wash your feet daily, dry them with care especially in between your toes and trim your toenails. A good pair of shoes will go a long way, believe me, I always splurge to have comfy shoes. It makes a world of difference since I suffer from gout. Make sure your shoes fit properly and not be tight on you. And women forget the high heels!

If your feet sweat a lot like mine do, I suggest a pair of Geox shoes that have tiny holes in them that let your feet breathe. Always buy shoes in the evening since your foot expands during the day and is biggest in the afternoon.

At home I can’t walk without my Crocs. Provides me with great comfort and a good cushion. Use a moisturizer like cocoa butter if you suffer from cracked or dry skin. Then put a pair of comfortable cotton socks on and go to sleep. Then in the morning you’ll notice your feet feel much softer. I’ve been told this works very well with Vaseline too.

Exercise can help increase your feet’s circulation. Nothing will help your feet more than a simple walk every day. This might seem counterintuitive since walking puts stress on your feet but you can’t really lift weights with your foot muscles can you? So the best way to exercise them and keep those muscles strong is by walking. It also increases foot strength and flexibility. Make sure to speak to your doctor if you experience any pain, redness or any other foot problem after exercising. Check out these 5 exercises for stronger and more flexible feet from fitness educator Stacey Lei Krauss that only takes 5 minutes a day.

In conclusion, good foot care and regular foot checkups with your podiatrist or doctor are an important part of your health care as a gout sufferer. Take care of your feet!

Posted by Spiro Koulouris

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24 Comments

  • Jimmy Clark

    Reply Reply July 5, 2018

    Have had gout for years. Just recently went to dr. gave me allopurinal and colchicine 0.6 mg. Big toe is numb and can’t bend at all, now right side of foot has pain. Any suggestions.

  • Sam

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    So I’ve been eating a low carb high fat high protein diet on and off for years (10 years) I am now 31 , Male, no health problems.

    In the last 3-4 months I’ve been stressed been drinking 2-3 shots of Vodka or Whiskey almost everynight and indulging in fats and meats and cheeses. I even occaisonally would cheat and eat say 3 cinnabons and lots of sugary stuff. Just generally unhealthy/bad diet for gout.

    3 weeks ago went to French restaurant, ate chicken liver and other stuff and drank ALOT. But also, I walked around in the cold for at least an hour drunk/full stomach with very bad uncomfortable dress shoes. I know this because a few weeks ago I wore the same shoes and it hurt my right foot a little bit. But this time walked ALOT on these bad shoes.

    Next day my right foot felt sore I could tell its from the shoes. It looks like I have a mild case of bunion.

    However 2 nights later I wake up middle of night as per usual to go take a leak, I feel my right foot and lower leg tingling sensation, burning a little bit and foot looked slightly swollen compared to left foot, but no redness and no pain to the touch. Definitely Something was up. It didn’t hurt too touch the bunion/big toe area where gout usually attacks. I thought it was gout but wasn’t sure as the pain got just only a little worse. Then for next few days I was lightly limping trying not to put pressure on the big toe trying to keep it straight. It feels like the muscle of big toe is cramped and hurts to bend the big toe. Anyways few days of limping then it went away completely and I forgot about it. This was just about 1 month ago.

    Last night I woke up middle of the night to go bathroom, again I feel the same symptoms in my right lowe leg and foot, tingling, mild burning sensation and again in the same big toe area it look like bunion and swollen a little bit. Again not painful to touch but my big toe feels like muscle is cramped and hurts to bend it. For dinner I had big salad salty with a good portion of meat and beef and 2-3 vodka shots. Drank very little water.

    So this time I thought for sure is gout. I went to emergency room 4:30 am , doctor looked at it said not sure if gout or Bunion bc usually with gout so painful you cant even touch the area, he was squeezing the swollen area I didnt really feel any pain, just the normal amount if someone squeezes your foot.

    Went to another doctor today he said he thinks its gout and prescribed me to get my uric acid checked ( which I did blood test today will get results tomorrow) and prescribed pain killer INDOCIN (Indomethacin) which I DIDNT take any yet as I dont feel the pain is that bad. Its just a dull aching swollen pain.

    Can there be such a thing as mild gout attack not a full attack that is typical? Maybe both times this happpened was mild gout attack. That’s what the doctor said. He said even you check your uric acid now it will be low bc already you got attack so already it deposited the uric crystals out of your blood stream. Not sure!

    I hope its bunion and not gout. When I look at both my feet, I can tell the right foot looks like it has a bit of bunion compared with left. But it’s too much coincidence I get the attack after eating really bad. In between the 2 episodes of this like zero pain or anything I completely forgot. There was no lingering from the first time it happened.

    Appreciate you inputs!!!

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply April 14, 2018

      No other inputs Sam but to get it checked. I would check it with a qualified rheumatologist and take it from there. It can be either or but nobody can diagnose you until you get your uric acid results back. If you think it’s bunions go also and visit a podiatrist.

  • Pectin

    Reply Reply March 27, 2018

    I had a gout flare up about 2-3 weeks ago.. and then I had been watching my diet and taking ACV, bicarbonate salt, milk, 80mg Uloric (before was taking 40mg on and off) and some tart cherries in pill format. Today I got my result of my blood work at Urate level of 3.0. IS THAT POSSIBLE??

    Then.. my skin on certain parts and legs feel itchy like some neuropathy sort of itch. The doctor said my numbers other than the low uric acid was all fine. A year ago my Urate levels were 8.5. I have some numbness and some tingle on feet or sides of foot and parts of hands and arm itch.

    F Uric Acid 3.0 L 3.7-8.6 (mg/dL)
    F C-Reactive Protein, Quant 4.1 0.0-4.9 (mg/L)
    F Sedimentation Rate-Westergren 2 0-30 (mm/hr)

    F WBC 8.0 3.4-10.8 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F RBC 4.98 4.14-5.80 (x10E6/uL) MB
    F Hemoglobin 13.6 13.0-17.7 (g/dL) MB
    F Hematocrit 42.0 37.5-51.0 (%) MB
    F MCV 84 79-97 (fL) MB
    F MCH 27.3 26.6-33.0 (pg) MB
    F MCHC 32.4 31.5-35.7 (g/dL) MB
    F RDW 14.0 12.3-15.4 (%) MB
    F Platelets 352 150-379 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F *Neutrophils 66 Not Estab. (%) MB
    F Lymphs 20 Not Estab. (%) MB
    F Monocytes 8 Not Estab. (%) MB
    F Eos 4 Not Estab. (%) MB
    F Basos 1 Not Estab. (%) MB
    Immature Cells MB
    F Neutrophils (Absolute) 5.3 1.4-7.0 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F Lymphs (Absolute) 1.6 0.7-3.1 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F Monocytes(Absolute) 0.7 0.1-0.9 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F Eos (Absolute) 0.3 0.0-0.4 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F Baso (Absolute) 0.0 0.0-0.2 (x10E3/uL) MB
    F Immature Granulocytes 1 Not Estab. (%) MB
    F Immature Grans (Abs) 0.1 0.0-0.1 (x10E3/uL) MB
    NRBC MB

  • charles

    Reply Reply March 24, 2018

    I am taking both Colchicine and Allopuirnol and they are not helping after 5 days.

    Was also taking both plus Indomed 1st time 2 months ago which helped. Thought Cochocine was the Gold Std, maybe it isn’t. Taking 6-8 Aleve plus 2 Tramadol now to stop the pain, but only stops for 3-4 hours.

  • Emanuelle Bastatas

    Reply Reply March 7, 2018

    Good day Spiro!

    If you have symptoms of gout, is this for lifetime?

    Thanks!

  • Varun

    Reply Reply February 15, 2018

    I have uric acid count 8. When I play badminton my feet pains. Is it due to the uric acid crystals, will they dissolve. What to do to get rid of uric acid crystals???

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply February 15, 2018

      You can take colchicine and/or allopurinol for guaranteed results for uric acid crystals removal.

  • Keith Baker

    Reply Reply January 8, 2018

    Hi,

    I’m a new visitor to your website. Do you know if there are certain types of shoes that can help? I’m thinking of Vibram fivefingers shoes: https://us.vibram.com/shop/fivefingers/

    A friend of mine told me they helped but I asked my chiropractor and he wasn’t so convinced…

    They would be hard to put on when your foot is swollen but I’m wondering if they can help prevent attacks if you wear them when not swollen…

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply January 8, 2018

      Hi Keith!

      Most comfortable shoes I find when suffering from a flare-up are Skechers with the gel cushion and they are very light. I doubt these fivefinger shoes would help since there isn’t enough cushion between your foot and surface.

  • Paul

    Reply Reply October 27, 2017

    I have had gout on and off for years.
    The past few weeks the gout had gone to my
    knee then the foot and the other knee and
    foot. Right now the gout seems to be gone.
    I have no pain but my foot and ankle is really
    swollen and hot to the touch. Is this common?

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply October 27, 2017

      Yes it could be Paul. Especially if your gout is moving around in different places inside your foot. Go visit your doctor to make sure.

  • Nigel M

    Reply Reply October 3, 2017

    Obviously I am suffering from a flare up and looking for a quick remedy. I have suffered for about 7 years now with only limited painful attacks in that time. It seems to me that gout is different in all of us. This current attack has built up over a week with a pain in the outside of my foot in the morning that eased with walking and activity. Then last night it went mad and I can no longer weight bear on the foot at all and the whole foot is swollen and red. Big toe is fine but ankle isn’t. The odd thing is that I can touch the area, rest my foot on the other with only a little discomfort.

    Definitely time to try and find the right diet and cut down on the alcohol. Here’s hoping the 2 hour solution will work for me.

    Interesting blog and glad to see that someone hasn’t thrown out modern medicine.

  • Mark Antony

    Reply Reply January 15, 2017

    Hi there! 3 years ago gout attacked me and went to the doctor and checked everything, blood test, urine, text etc… and found out I have gout and he gave me Indocid 25mg to get away my gout and it works! I’m just wondering I went way back home overseas for almost 2 years stayed there and I ate like shrimps, beans, pork, beef, baked scallops, some beer but not much, in a short story I took the food that can trigger gout and luckily my gout didn’t attack me. That suprised me but I go to the gym 4x a week and sweat a lot but I’m not sure that’s the reason the gout didn’t attack me and now I went back to here, to aussie after a month, since I arrived my gout attacked me on my left fòot. That was December 28 of last year. I took my medcine and drink and my gout is gone. Just this January 13 recently my gout attacked me again but on my right foot my big toe the joints really hurts a lot and swollen my first time and I went to the doctor but different one and asked for medicine and she gave me a new medicine called lengout and I had this blood and urine checked again! I’m just wondering for 3 days now my toe still hurts a lot, I dont know why even I took my medcine 3x a day!

    QUESTIONS: WHEY PROTEIN CAN TRIGGER GOUT?
    TESTEROD CAN TRIGGER GOUT?
    SOYA MILK CAN TRIGGER GOUT?

    PLS ADVICE! APPRECIATE IT!! Thank you

    Macky

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply January 18, 2017

      Hi Mark!

      Whey protein can cause uric acid levels to go higher, think of eating too much meat which is high in protein, it’s the same thing, your body doesn’t need that much protein and excess protein harms the kidneys. Soya milk is fine, in moderation of course. As for Testerod I am not familiar with the product.

  • Mark

    Reply Reply March 28, 2016

    Hi, I just recently had my first gout attack and i’m really confused even after visiting my dr. Still awaying uric acid levels.

    I walked 21 miles over a course of 4 days, my big toe was sore for over a week. Next think I know I was at the gym and I couldn’t walk and it hurt to take my shoe over. Go to the dr and get told I have gout. I took cherry extract, its mostly gone but my toe that was sore BEFORE the attack still hurts.
    I’ve been reading online that a foot injury could cause gout. How is that even possible ? Please help, you seem to be very educated on the topic.

    Thank you

    Mark

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply March 28, 2016

      Hi Mark!

      Hard to diagnose, you have to take a blood test to measure your uric acid and that will determine if you have gout. It could be muscular pain and all you need is a good foot massage but I can’t tell you that via email. A foot injury in the past can’t cause gout, if you already have high uric acid and you injure your foot, that can then cause a gout attack but not an old injury being the cause of you being diagnosed with gout. Definitely go see your doctor.

      Spiro

  • Ayman R.

    Reply Reply December 12, 2015

    One of the gout side effects that I have started to face recently is that even a small walk will cause pain in my foot just behind the big toe where the flare usually attacks, I am searching for a shoes or a special insole that I can use to decrease the pressure on my big toe as maybe this will help in reducing the pain, anyone got an idea on what to use and from where can I get it online please?

    • Spiro Koulouris

      Reply Reply December 12, 2015

      Best to see a podiatrist so he/she can examine your foot and maybe recommend a custom made sole just for your foot.

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