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Gout Food Guide

How low purine diets effect gout

By August 10, 2022No Comments8 min read

For those with hyperuricemia, or high blood levels of uric acid, which can cause gout and kidney stones, a reduced purine diet is frequently advised. Reducing dietary purine helps lower uric acid levels because purine from food breaks down into uric acid in the body.


What diet is good for gout?

High uric acid levels in your blood are what cause gout. Extra uric acid crystallizes into sharp particles that lodge in your joints and inflame and hurt them. But by keeping a low-purine diet, you can aid in lowering the level of uric acid in your body. Lowering uric acid levels can aid in preventing the growth of new crystals which in turn minimizes gout attacks.


What is a low-purine diet?

Chemicals called purines occur naturally in some foods and beverages. Uric acid is a result of the breakdown of these substances by your body. In order to lower uric acid, a low-purine diet eliminates the foods and beverages with the highest purine concentration. Additionally, it promotes a few particular meals that may help your body produce less uric acid.


Who could benefit from a diet low in purines?

Reducing high-purine meals can help anyone with hyperuricemia, or high blood uric acid levels. In those with hyperuricemia who have not yet acquired gout, this may assist to prevent the condition. Additionally, it might help stop the progression of current gout as well as other hyperuricemia-related problems including kidney stones.


What foods exacerbate gout?

The top ten foods and beverages that cause gout include:

  • Sugary foods and beverages. Half of typical table sugar is fructose, which decomposes to uric acid. Gout can be brought on by any food or beverage with a high sugar content.
  • Turkey. Despite being leaner, this meat is heavy in purines. Avoid processed deli turkey at all costs.
  • Meat sauces and gravies.
  • Alcohol. Alcohol hinders your kidneys from excreting uric acid, drawing it back into your body where it continues to build up even though not all alcoholic beverages are strong in purines.
  • Animal organs. Liver, tripe sweetbreads, brains, and kidneys are a few of these.
  • Game meat. Gout was referred to as the “rich man’s sickness” throughout the Middle Ages because it was associated with delicacies like goose, veal, and venison.
  • Yeast as well as yeast extract.
  • Fructose-rich syrups. This is fructose in a concentrated form. High fructose syrup can be found in a variety of packaged foods that you might not often expect if you start reading labels.
  • Some seafoods, such as haddock, herring, scallops, mussels, cod, tuna, and trout.
  • Red Meat such as feef, lamb, hog, and bacon


What foods are the healthiest to consume if you have gout?

While consuming specific foods won’t cure gout, research show that several meals and beverages may assist lower uric acid levels in the body. For instance:

  • Milk. Early studies indicate that consuming skim milk may help lower uric acid levels and gout flare-ups. It also lessens your body’s inflammatory response to uric acid crystals in your joints. It speeds up the excretion of uric acid in your urine.
  • Cherries. The benefits of cherries and cherry juice for treating gout symptoms are now being studied by scientists, and preliminary findings are encouraging. Cherries are considered to be anti-inflammatory foods, and they may also help your body produce less uric acid.
  • Coffee. You may have heard that coffee contains an acid, but this acid is not the same as uric acid. In actuality, there are multiple ways that regular coffee consumption might lower uric acid levels. It quickens the rate of excretion while slowing the conversion of purine to uric acid.
  • Water. Five to eight glasses of water a day are recommended for those who want to reduce their risk of developing gout symptoms. Given that your kidneys employ water to eliminate uric acid in your urine, this makes logical. Water is beneficial to renal health as well. One factor that might cause gout is impaired renal function.


However, rather of focusing on specific meals, many healthcare professionals prefer to emphasize overall dietary recommendations. They advise you to:

  • Try other sources of protein. Even while some meats and seafood have higher uric acid content than others, as long as you consume a variety of foods and avoid the worst offenders mentioned above, you should be fine.
  • Enjoy your vegetables and fruits. The majority are low in purines, however even those that are haven’t been proven to have an impact on gout symptoms. The advantages are also worthwhile.
  • Eat grains (except oats). Cereals, bread, rice, and pasta are all gout-friendly (except oats). To help control blood sugar, avoid packaged foods that have high fructose corn syrup added to them and go for whole grains (at least half the time).


What benefits might a low-purine diet offer?

  • Decrease in uric acid. Those who are predisposed to hyperuricemia may be able to control it with diet in order to avoid consequences like gout and kidney stones. People who have already been given a gout or kidney stone diagnosis may be able to stop or at least slow the formation of new uric acid crystals in their joints or kidneys.
  • Loosing weight. A side benefit of avoiding high-purine foods like red meat and sweets is that you might lose weight. Gout is closely linked to metabolic disorders such obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease as well as weight gain that is excessive. Losing weight reduces your likelihood of getting gout by a statistically significant amount, and it also eases the symptoms of gout by easing the strain on your joints.
  • Lowering Medication.  Diet is not intended to be a substitute for medication in the treatment of gout, nor is it as successful. However, being mindful of your food may reduce the amount of medication you require.


What are the drawbacks of a diet low in purines?

  • It’s restrictive. A low-purine diet is a long-term lifestyle change for those with hyperuricemia. It also happens to target a lot of popular vices including alcohol, sweets, and sugar. Giving this up permanently could seem unreasonable to some people, especially if they are only using it as a supplemental therapy. You do need to maintain it in order to see results, just like with most diets.
  • It restricts supplies of omega-3. The low-purine diet restricts a lot of omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in seafood, one of the most significant dietary sources. Omega-3s are known to provide a number of health advantages, including the reduction of arthritis-related joint pain and inflammation. It might be difficult for many Americans to receive enough omega-3 fatty acids if seafood is restricted. Supplements with fish oil are acceptable on this diet, though. Additionally healthy sources and comparatively low in purines are salmon, sardines, and mackerel.
  • It isn’t a cure. Diet may have a small impact on your blood levels of uric acid, but not as much as drugs. Combining them is the best course of action. Some claim that when compared to medication, the advantages of a diet aren’t demonstrated to be worthwhile. But effective gout management frequently requires more than just medication. Many people in these situations value having a preventative measure they can take to lessen their symptoms.


A low-purine diet is intended to assist in managing hyperuricemia and its side effects, including gout. However, adopting a diet-based lifestyle is also a sensible choice for overall wellbeing. It minimizes the use of sweets, alcohol, and meat while promoting plants and non-animal sources of protein. This won’t deprive you of any essential nutrition and has many advantages besides lowering uric acid. A low-purine diet might be worth a shot if you’re at risk of getting gout or of experiencing another gout attack. Check with your doctor to see if it’s a good option for you.