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Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines

Foods high in uric acid and purines form the conclusion of the High Purine Foods study, which is described below. This concludes the study: Purine-Rich Foods, Dairy and Protein Intake, and the Risk of Gout in Men.

Your GoutPal Update

I flagged this article for review as part of my project to make this website easier for all gout sufferers. Therefore, I must make it clear that:

  1. This article is aimed at Gout Dieters. Specifically, gout sufferers who are actively monitoring the effects of their diet changes on their uric acid levels. Otherwise, gout sufferers interested in food should start at GoutPal Plan for Gout Foodies.
  2. Gout Dieters should seek high-protein, low-purine foods. But, they must recognize that vegetable purines do not raise uric acid. Because not all foods high in purines can be described as foods high in uric acid.
  3. Individual high protein foods from animals should not be omitted from your diet simply because they are high in purines. Because Gout Dieters must consider total diet and all factors that affect uric acid levels. Especially purine-rich flesh from overweight bodies.

You can read my original article below. But please bear in mind that the conclusions for you personally depend on your individual circumstances. So please ask for personal help with your gout diet if you need more info.
Protein Purine Gout Food Photo

Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines Discussions

This large study involving men found an increased risk of gout with higher meat or seafood consumption, but not with higher consumption of animal or vegetable protein or purine-rich vegetables. Furthermore, we found a strong inverse association between the consumption of dairy products, especially low-fat dairy products, and the incidence of gout. These associations were independent of both the other dietary factors we studied and other purported risk factors for gout, such as high body-mass index, older age, hypertension, alcohol use, use of diuretics, and chronic renal failure.

This contrasts with earlier studies that suggested links between high purine diets and high uric acid. However, these theoretical links were based on artificial loading of purines. Also, measurements were based on uric acid levels, not gout.17-20

These old theories have weaknesses. Purines vary from food to food and change when food is cooked or processed. Different purines are more readily turned into uric acid in our bodies. Even when turned into uric acid above 7mg/dL (0.42mmol/L), not all individuals develop gout.17-23

This study claims to overcome these weaknesses by examining common foods or food groups and new cases of gout. Interestingly, it notes that each additional daily serving of meat was associated with a 21 percent increase in the risk of gout, and each additional weekly serving of seafood was associated with a 7 percent increase in risk. Another interesting effect was noted whereby these increases are more marked once people get gout. As clearance of uric acid through the kidneys is often reduced.24-25

When comparing subjects who were not overweight, with subjects who were overweight, the impact of seafood on gout was greater. Though the study cannot explain these differences, it does highlight the finding that different purines are treated differently3-4, 26. Clearly, fish is processed differently by our bodies, and further investigation may reveal new dietary guidelines.27

Again, the difference in the action of different purine rich foods is emphasized by the finding that high-purine vegetables had no effect on gout. The report strongly recommends that advice on purines is changed to remove vegetables from the restricted list.

The study notes the strong relationship between high consumption of dairy products, especially low-fat dairy products, and reduced gout. In the absence of any other identified component, this is assumed to be caused by the uric acid lowering properties of milk proteins.

Protein from any source is not associated with higher gout expectancy, and there are indications that vegetable protein may be protective, though not as strongly indicated as dairy protein. High-protein diets are associated with increased urinary uric acid excretion and may reduce the blood uric acid level.28-30 In a recent open-label study involving 13 patients, a dietary intervention was used that included an increased proportional intake of protein; the study showed a significant reduction in the rate of recurrent attacks of gout.31 The authors conclude that protein and purines should be viewed differently, protein being good for gout.

The study then describes various strengths and weaknesses compared to similar studies. 32-34, and concludes:

Our study was observational; thus, we cannot rule out the possibility that unmeasured factors might contribute to the observed associations. Overall, however, our findings provide prospective evidence that meat consumption and seafood consumption are associated with an increased risk of gout, whereas consumption of dairy products, especially low-fat dairy products, is associated with a substantially reduced risk of gout. In contrast, moderate intake of purine-rich vegetables or protein is not associated with an increased risk of gout.

Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines: Next Steps

If you have any gout advice that warns against purine-rich vegetables being high in uric acid, now is the time to throw it out. Any gout diet is only as good as the treatment plan it supports, but if you do nothing else, look at switching some meat/fish protein to vegetable/dairy.

You can review the different parts of this report as follows:

High Purine Foods
Introduction to Purine-Rich Foods, Dairy and Protein Intake, and the Risk of Gout in Men.
What Foods Are High In Purines?
Methods for Purine-Rich Foods, Dairy and Protein Intake, and the Risk of Gout in Men.
Purine Rich Foods To Avoid With Gout
Results of Purine-Rich Foods, Dairy and Protein Intake, and the Risk of Gout in Men.

Leave Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines to browse other Gout Diet research.


Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines References

  1. Clifford AJ, Riumallo JA, Young VR, Scrimshaw NS. Effect of oral purines on serum and urinary uric acid of normal, hyperuricemic and gouty humans. J Nutr 1976;106:428-434
  2. Clifford AJ, Story DL. Levels of purines in foods and their metabolic effects in rats. J Nutr 1976;106:435-442
  3. Zollner N. Influence of various purines on uric acid metabolism. Bibl Nutr Dieta 1973;19:34-43
  4. Zollner N, Griebsch A. Diet and gout. Adv Exp Med Biol 1974;41:435-442
  5. Griebsch A, Zollner N. Effect of ribomononucleotides given orally on uric acid production in man. Adv Exp Med Biol 1974;41:443-449
  6. Roubenoff R. Gout and hyperuricemia. Rheum Dis Clin North Am 1990;16:539-550
  7. Campion EW, Glynn RJ, DeLabry LO. Asymptomatic hyperuricemia: risks and consequences in the Normative Aging Study. Am J Med 1987;82:421-426
  8. Nugent CA. Renal urate excretion in gout studied by feeding ribonucleic acid. Arthritis Rheum 1965;8:671-685
  9. Gibson T, Highton J, Potter C, Simmonds HA. Renal impairment and gout. Ann Rheum Dis 1980;39:417-423
  10. Glynn RJ, Campion EW, Silbert JE. Trends in serum uric acid levels 1961-1980. Arthritis Rheum 1983;26:87-93
  11. Hu FB, Bronner L, Willett WC, et al. Fish and omega-3 fatty acid intake and risk of coronary heart disease in women. JAMA 2002;287:1815-1821
  12. Waslien CI, Calloway DH, Margen S. Uric acid production of men fed graded amounts of egg protein and yeast nucleic acid. Am J Clin Nutr 1968;21:892-897
  13. Lewis HB, Doisy EA. Studies in uric acid metabolism. I. The influence of high protein diets on the endogenous uric acid elimination. J Biol Chem 1918;36:1-7
  14. Raiziss GW, Dubin H, Ringer AI. Studies in endogenous uric acid metabolism. J Biol Chem 1914;19:473-485
  15. Dessein PH, Shipton EA, Stanwix AE, Joffe BI, Ramokgadi J. Beneficial effects of weight loss associated with moderate calorie/carbohydrate restriction, and increased proportional intake of protein and unsaturated fat on serum urate and lipoprotein levels in gout: a pilot study. Ann Rheum Dis 2000;59:539-543
  16. Shadick NA, Kim R, Weiss S, Liang MH, Sparrow D, Hu H. Effect of low level lead exposure on hyperuricemia and gout among middle aged and elderly men: the Normative Aging Study. J Rheumatol 2000;27:1708-1712
  17. Abbott RD, Brand FN, Kannel WB, Castelli WP. Gout and coronary heart disease: the Framingham Study. J Clin Epidemiol 1988;41:237-242
  18. Hochberg MC, Thomas J, Thomas DJ, Mead L, Levine DM, Klag MJ. Racial differences in the incidence of gout: the role of hypertension. Arthritis Rheum 1995;38:628-632
  19. Sharpe CR. A case-control study of alcohol consumption and drinking behaviour in patients with acute gout. Can Med Assoc J 1984;131:563-567


Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines Document Change History

Foods High In Uric Acid And Purines Doc Change HistoryTo read the document change history, click the GoutPal History image on the right.

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