Maybe I shouldn’t celebrate with food!

Food is great to celebrate with but gout sucks. I’m thinking in future I should be more careful with my dietary choices.

Now, just a warning, this is a bit of a rambling post with little to no direction!

So no photographs from a walk around Lake Ginninderra this weekend. I didn’t even manage to walk to the shops, I had to drive. You see my left ankle is in excruciating pain. Well, it would be if it wasn’t for the miracle of modern medicine that are pharmaceutical products aimed to reduce and mask pain.

Let me backtrack a bit. In my past, I’ve had the occasional episode of gout. For those that don’t know, gout is an accumulation of uric acid and in some joints, the uric acid precipitates as crystals in the synovial fluid. A gouty joint is a painful joint. In medical school, we were taught that even the weight of a sheet can cause excruciating pain in a gouty toe. It’s all true. Each time I’ve experienced gout the pain is indeed excruciating and when I lay down to sleep I need to build a little tent at the foot of my bed with pillows to avoid anything touching my foot.

In the past, my experience with gout has always been associated with attempts to lose weight, usually by consuming fewer carbohydrates with a concomitant increase in animal protein. Gout is associated with an increased intake of purines and pyrimidines in the diet. These things are found in the nuclei of cells, so when you have lots of rapidly dividing cells you get lots of purines and pyrimidines. These are found in all meat including red meat and especially meat from the reticuloendothelial system, like liver. The highest concentration will be found in products like bone marrow which is becoming very popular in cooking shows like Master Chef and My Kitchen Rules. So if you supplement your diet with pรขtรฉ and lots of red meat, gout may be a frequent visitor.

So it’s strange that I’m suffering this weekend. I haven’t been trying to lose weight despite wanting to lose weight. My diet hasn’t been particularly rich in protein and rapidly dividing cells. I’ve been eating a good amount of vegetable matter. However, it’s also winter, so I admit my water intake could be better but I do drink a lot of fluids.

On Friday, I received a little good news and felt like celebrating.

I bought 21 pieces of KFC and enjoyed dinner and used the leftover KFC for a chicken casserole.

Friday night, as has become a tradition, was crapulent. I was awake at 2 am and couldn’t really get to sleep until about 5.30 am and then it was basically time to get out of bed. Why do I regularly experience insomnia on a Friday night? When I stepped out of bed, my left ankle started to hurt. I did wonder if I had hurt it the previous day when I rolled it slightly. The pain progressively got worse over the course of the day and by the early afternoon, I had assumed it was the beginning of an episode of gout. I found some Indomethacin and began the antiinflammatory treatment.

Now, chicken isn’t on the list of gouty foods, but I do eat quite a bit of chicken and salmon. I’ve been deliberately reducing my red meat consumption. I’m a little worried that I may end up having more episodes of gout. I’ll have to restart uric acid lowering medication, be more careful about my diet and drink a lot more water.

I think my attitude to food needs to change too. It’s tough though. I’m always thinking about food. When I arrive at work I think about lunch. After lunch, I think about tea. On Thursdays, I think about Friday take away and on Fridays, I ponder what I can buy and cook and eat on the weekend.

So, what do I do? Well, it has to be more vegetables, less red meat and a lot more water.

So less of this

Slow cooked brisket ready for carving and eating Gary Lum
Slow cooked brisket ready for carving and eating
Six hour slow cooked brisket with olive sourdough bread and some mustard Gary Lum
Six-hour slow cooked brisket with olive sourdough bread and some mustard

Don’t do this as often

KFC for dinner, a selection from a 21 piece bucket. Gary Lum
KFC for dinner, a selection from a 21 piece bucket.

And more of this

Bacon salad with avocado, lime zest, celery, and pear Gary Lum
Bacon salad with avocado, lime zest, celery, and pear


21 Replies to “Maybe I shouldn’t celebrate with food!”

  1. You may need colchinine for the pain. This works really well for acute flares of gout. I didn’t know that it was cell nuclei that were the problem for purines etc. Does that mean that eg the Masai who drink blood and milk, (no nuclei in red blood cells) and vampires (same as Masai without the milk) are less prone to gout?

    1. Colchine would be great. I tend to use a nonsteroidal antiinflammatory because the side effects are less severe. I’m not sure if the Masai have a lower rate or not. It would be an interesting study. I’m assuming the Masai have more to their diet including some meat. As for Vampires, if all they do is drink blood, the only nuclei Vampires would consume would be the leucocytes or white blood cells. If a Vampire happened to bite into someone with a leucophilia, there may be a problem!

    1. Thanks Janey. The pain has now gone thanks to medication. I think crapulent is even a real word ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    1. Thanks, Sarah. Medication is amazing. Yep, the salad looks and tastes better with some meat. I will have to hold off the anchovies though ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

  2. I do hope you feel better. I’ve read about gout, I know a person who sometimes gets it, but you managed to make it more realistic. Ouch!
    Your delicious leftovers are fine at my house! Although, I also tend to curb my tendency toward KFC. Something in it makes my glucose spike. So, perhaps I’d just nibble on that meal. Smiling.

    1. Thanks Kris. The pain killers are working a treat.
      I really need to start eating more healthy.

  3. Sorry about the gout, Gaz. It sounds painful :/ The insomnia sounds annoying. 2am is around the time when I usually go to bed , though, weekdays and weekends. So if you ever want to chat then and if I’m up… ๐Ÿ˜‚ Hope all gets better. Annoying to be in pain when you want to get stuff done right here and now.

    1. Thanks Mabel ๐Ÿ˜ƒ
      I’m in awe of people like you who can stay awake. I’m in bed right now and about to drift off hopefully ๐Ÿ˜ƒ
      I’m so grateful for analgesic drugs ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ‘ Tomorrow should just be a dull ache ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

    2. Hope you get some sleep soon and ready yourself for another 40-hour week ๐Ÿ˜Š I’m every bit the nocturnal person and each night I have to try to force myself to sleep so I can get to my 9-5 (thereabouts) job on time ๐Ÿ˜‚

    3. Thanks, Mabel. Due to the wonders of modern medicine, I was able to sleep without any acute pain. Sounds like in the future, as a writer you’ll be a night owl who works until the dawn and then sleeps until the early afternoon.

    4. Hopefully you get more nights without pain, and the insomnia takes a backseat too. I do not know if I will ever be able to live a life like that, sleeping at dawn. I would love to, but it seems life might have other plans for me :/ ๐Ÿ˜‚

    5. If it’s your dream Mabel I hope it happens.
      I find it curious that I’m about to go to bed now you’re probably wide awake and full of inspiration to write.

    6. I do hope one day I write a book that sells a lot and I make a living off it ๐Ÿ˜Š Just settled down after dinner about a couple hours ago and now ready to tackle the rest of the night ๐Ÿ˜‚ Hope you have a restful night ๐Ÿ˜Š

    7. Thanks Mabel. You too. Work hard. I’m off to sleep ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

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