According to newly released data, the increase in sedentarism as well as binge eating during the COVID-19 lockdown has led to a significant rise in gout cases!
This health problem, once known as the “disease of kings,” has managed to send no less than 234,000 to the hospital in 2021 and 2022 according to NHS Digital statistics.
In fact, this number is no less than 20 percent higher than it used to be before the pandemic.
Furthermore, the statistics also show a rise in obesity over the same period of time.
Of course, it makes sense as to why! Experts point out that many may have spent more time sitting down and/or eating junk food and snacks while stuck in their homes.
As for gout, this is a type of inflammatory arthritis that leads to severe and sudden joint pain, most often in the big toe but also affecting other joints of the foot, wrist, hand, knee or elbow.
Others can also experience hot, red, swollen skin over the painful area of the joint.
Tam Fry from the National Obesity Forum shared via The Sunday Telegraph that “Forget Falstaff, Henry VIII and other rich Victorians who made gout infamous. Today’s Elizabethans are actually eating and drinking all of them under the table.”
Indeed, gout is one of the oldest known illnesses, being documented all the way back to the ancient Egyptians.
It usually happens when there’s too much uric acid in the body as it can lead to deposits of sodium urate crystals in and around the joints.
Naturally, this causes some terrible pain but fortunately, it should get better with some ibuprofen.
In the eventuality that the pain and swelling don’t go away, however, steroids are also used to treat this disease.
Unfortunately, Fry points out that those who are dealing with gout are not getting all the help they need from the NHS.
“Gout sufferers are miles away from getting the treatment that they need and their appalling care a is little better than that delivered in the days of the Dark Ages,” he stated.
According to the NHS, to avoid the return of this disease, people should exercise regularly, quit smoking, follow a healthy diet and reach a healthy weight.