How to Have a Safe Summer BBQ Season if You Have Gout

Summer season is here which means you’ll probably be attending more BBQ parties in the next few weeks. It’s not a great barbecue unless there’s meat, seafood, and beer, right? While these barbecue essentials are delicious, they can wreak havoc if you have gout. So, no wonder there’s a high incidence of gout during the summer season.

If you want to stay safe during this season, there are some easy tips you can follow. Here’s how you can have a safe (and fun!) summer BBQ season if you have gout.

Watch Your Meat Intake

It can be tempting to feast on that delicious steak your friends and family have prepared for you but that’s the last thing you want to do. This is because this type of meat is very high in purines. Purines become uric acid in the body and if there’s too much, it could lead to a gout attack.

Thankfully, you do not have to avoid all meat! Lean meats like chicken and turkey are great alternatives if you have gout because they don’t have as many purines as other kinds of meat like red meat or organ meats.

Tip: Be Prepared

If you’re hosting a BBQ party, it’s best to serve lean types of meat. That way, you’ll have something to eat.

In contrast, if you’re going to attend one, you can let the host know ahead of time or offer to grill the meat you brought yourself! They’ll appreciate the offer and will be more likely to accommodate your request.

Be Careful With Seafood

Seafood may also be served at the BBQ you’re attending so pay special attention to this as well. You want to avoid most seafood since they are also high in purines. The worst types of seafood are anchovies, shellfish, sardines, and tuna.

Well-meaning friends and acquaintances might encourage you to try them. As tempted as you might be, it’s best if you politely decline the offer and explore the other dishes served at the party.

Say No to Alcohol

Beer is often served at BBQ parties which is usually okay for most people but not if you have gout! Unfortunately, beer is one of the worst food items for gout. It’s high in purines and is strongly associated with gout attacks.

Again, you might be pressured into drinking this summer but that’s all it is… pressure. Millions of people get by during summer without having to drink beer.

Tip: How to Avoid Beer

To avoid beer you can simply decline the offer to drink or better yet, carry a glass with you. Having a drink with you already prevents other people from offering you the drinks you’re better off avoiding.

Your glass can contain water or any healthy drink you prefer. You can even drink wine! In moderation of course. Wine is not as bad as beer and can even have some health benefits.

If you must drink, only drink one beer and stick to organic types of beer. They’re healthier compared to mainstream beers you see today. Some good choices are Heineken and Amstel Light.

Skip the Sugary Drinks and Junk Food

If it’s not beer, you might be offered soda or sweetened juice. You should avoid these types of drinks as much as possible since they can raise uric acid in your body.

Other popular foods served at BBQ parties are chips and other types of junk food. These are highly processed foods that do no good for your condition so it’s best to avoid them at all costs.

Snack on Healthy Options

A way to have a more enjoyable BBQ season is by always arming yourself with healthy food. When temptation is nearby, you can always turn to your healthy meal or snack to satiate that hunger.

Some good healthy options for gout are fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, eggs, potatoes, yogurt, and coffee.

Drink Plenty of Water

Summer weather can get hot causing you to sweat a lot. You’ll want to replenish by drinking more water.

Drinking plenty of water prevents you from getting dehydrated which is a cause for a gout attack. Drinking water will also help dilute uric acid in the blood, which prevents it from accumulating.

Modify Your Exercise Hours

If you’re going to be indulging in plenty of food this summer, it’s important that you partake in regular exercise. This is to ensure that you are burning off those calories you just consumed.

While exercise is important, you should be mindful of the time that you are exercising. Since summer can get very hot, it might be better to exercise early in the morning or at night when the temperature is not too high. Wear light and airy clothes to prevent overheating while exercising.

Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

The hot weather can make it difficult to sleep comfortably at night. You might end up not getting enough sleep causing you to experience fatigue. As a result, your immunity declines, putting you at risk for a gout attack. To prevent a dreaded gout flare, you’ll need to make adjustments during this season to ensure you get a good shuteye.

Make sure your room is dark and cool. Avoid using gadgets a few hours before your sleep, and make it a point to go to bed at a reasonable hour. This way, you’ll get enough sleep which will help you deal with the stresses of the next day.

Monitor Your Uric Acid

A healthy uric acid should be less than 6.0-milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). To make sure you are within the healthy levels, you should be monitoring your uric acid levels regularly. A visit to the doctor every few months is recommended but you may check daily as well.

Luckily, there are now devices that allow you to check your uric acid instantly. Take advantage of these tools so you can keep a close eye on your gout health and make changes right away.

Managing Gout in the Summer

Summer seems like a landmine of gout triggers just waiting to happen. But if you’re well-prepared, you don’t have to worry about anything.

Be vigilant of your food and drink intake during BBQ parties and take extra measures with your health during this season to avoid gout attacks.

Spiro Koulouris

Spiro Koulouris

Spiro Koulouris is a leading gout diet expert, author, and blogger at GoutandYou. He’s dedicated his life to inspiring people to obtain a healthy lifestyle and living a gout-free life. Spiro has battled with the disease for years and has dedicated himself to become educated and informed on the subject.

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