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5 Ways For People With Gout To Enjoy Hotpot
Published on: Friday, January 13, 2023
By: DOC2US
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The New Year’s Eve (Chu Xi) dinner is one of the most important meals for family members as they come back to the family home for a reunion dinner. Hotpot would be one of the common dishes served during the New Year’s Eve dinner.

A hotpot is a dish where a pot is filled with a soup base such as tomato soup, mala soup, or bone broth soup, and the broth is constantly simmered. Raw meat that is thinly sliced, vegetables, and seafood are placed around the hotpot, and when everything is ready, each person will then cook their own ingredients in the boiling pot.  

For people with gout, the celebration of Chinese New Year can be a challenging time, as many of the traditional foods and drinks served during this festive season are high in purines and may trigger gout attacks. 

WHAT IS GOUT?

Gout is a common type of inflammatory arthritis that is caused by an accumulation of uric acid in the blood, which can lead to the formation of crystals in the joints and surrounding tissue. The body produces uric acid when it breaks down purine, which is found naturally in the body and food.

The most common symptom of gout is sudden severe pain in one or more joints at a given time. It is often accompanied by swelling, redness, constant discomfort, and tenderness. Gout flares start suddenly and can last for days or weeks, followed by a long period of remission. 

THE SYMPTOMS OF GOUT CAN BE TRIGGERED BY CERTAIN FOOD THAT IS HIGH IN PURINE SUCH AS:  

Seafood (anchovies, sardines, shrimps, and mackerel)

Red meat (beef, lamb, and pork)

Organ meats (liver, kidney, and brain)

Alcohol (especially beer or hard liquor)

Sweetened beverages (soft drinks, sports drinks, packaged drinks, and high fructose juices, such as orange juice)  

Moreover,  cooking methods such as a hotpot or prolonged boiling of high purine food sources may increase purine content in the soup whic, increasing acid in the body.

HERE ARE 5 WAYS FOR PEOPLE WITH GOUT TO ENJOY HOTPOT DURING CNY WITHOUT INCREASING THE RISK OF GOUT FLARE-UPS:

1. Choose low-purine ingredients: While the hotpot is typically made with a variety of meats, vegetables, and other ingredients, it's important to choose those that are low in purines. Some good options include  

Tofu,

Vegetables,

Specific seafood such as (salmon, tuna, whitefish, or tilapia),

Lean cuts of meat such as chicken. 

2. Opt for a broth with lower levels of purines: Many hotpot broths are made with ingredients that are high in purines, such as bones and seafood. To reduce your risk of a gout flare-up, choose a broth made with low-purine ingredients, such as vegetables or chicken.

3. Avoid alcohol and sugary beverages: Alcohol is a known trigger for gout flare-ups, so it's important to avoid it at all times, not only during hotpots. Therefore, stick to non-alcoholic beverages, such as

Tea: black or green tea

Coconut, plum, or unsweetened barley juice 

Lemonade water

4. Drink plenty of water: Drinking water and staying hydrated during the Chinese New Year is an important part of managing gout. As mentioned, the festive celebrations often involve a lot of rich, high-purine foods; water will help to flush excess uric acid out of the body, which directly reduces the risk of gout attacks. Therefore, it's good to aim to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day. 

5. Portion control: While hotpot is meant to be enjoyed in large quantities, it's important for people with gout to practice portion control. Eating too much can increase the risk of a gout flare-up, so be mindful of how much you're eating and try to stick to smaller portions. 

By following these suggestions, we hope that individuals with gout can still enjoy hotpot during the Chinese New Year while minimizing the risk of a flare-up. 

Remember to listen to your body and pay attention to any signs of discomfort or pain. With careful planning and the right approach, it's possible to enjoy this tradition while managing your gout wisely. 

This article is written by Loubna Khaled & Kimberley Kong. 

REFERENCES:

Cui A. Why you should eat hot pot this Lunar New Year [Internet]. Food. 2021 [cited 2023 Jan 9]. Available from: https://www.sbs.com.au/food/article/2021/02/01/why-you-should-eat-hot-pot-lunar-new-year

Gout - Symptoms and causes [Internet]. Mayo Clinic. ; 2022 [cited 2023 Jan 4]. Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/gout/symptoms-causes/syc-20372897#:~:text=Gout%20is%20a%20common%20and,often%20in%20the%20big%20toe.

Gout [Internet]. CDC 2023 [cited 2023 Jan 4]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/arthritis/basics/gout.html#:~:text=quality%20of%20life%3F-,What%20is%20gout%3F,no%20symptoms%2C%20known%20as%20remission.

Lay Ean Eng. Chinese New Year and the symbolism of the Steamboat [Internet]. Nyonyalicious. 2021 [cited 2023 Jan 5]. Available from: https://nyonyalicious.com.au/chinese-new-year-and-the-symbolism-of-the-steamboa/

Underwood M. Sugary drinks, fruit, and increased risk of gout. BMJ [Internet]. 2008 Feb 7 [cited 2023 Jan 9];336(7639):285–6. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2234537/

Drinks advise for gout patients----Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention [Internet]. Chinacdc.cn. 2022 [cited 2023 Jan 9]. Available from: https://en.chinacdc.cn/in_focus/202206/t20220620_259737.html

Can gout patients eat hot pot? Master 4 points to avoid acute gout attacks [Internet]. Inf.news. 2023 [cited 2023 Jan 5]. Available from: https://inf.news/en/health/45af1dcbf0b8036023070fde3f9ee9e9.html





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