Don’t get confused about uric acid diet.
Uric acid is important to all gout sufferers. Diet is important to most gout sufferers. Uric acid diet is often misunderstood.
What is Uric Acid Diet?
The common misconception is that uric acid comes from purines, purines come from food, therefore avoiding purine rich foods is the best thing to do. Unfortunately, this is not true, or at least not the whole truth.
There are foods that can be considered high in purines, but the purines that lead to gout come from flesh. They come from the animal flesh that we eat, and from the flesh of our bodies. That is why vegetarians get gout. It is also why many meat eaters get gout. This is particularly significant during rapid weight loss from illness, dieting, or from religious fasting. We can say that eating no food can cause an increase in uric acid. That makes it clear that uric acid diet is not an easy subject to understand.
Uric Acid Diet Explained
So does this mean that uric acid diet control is pointless? Far from it.
Uric acid control is vital to stopping gout. You need to understand the role of diet in controlling uric acid.
Firstly, though these are general points, we know that everyone has different metabolism. Gout sufferers also have different degrees of gout. You need a personal uric acid diet, just as you need a personal gout treatment plan. In fact, diet and treatment should work together to keep your uric acid at safe levels.
The key to understanding uric acid diet is to avoid anything in your diet that makes uric acid higher. I explain these in detail in my pages about Foods To Avoid With Gout. There are no specific foods, but you need to avoid excesses, or bad habits that shock your metabolism. Excess calories, iron, or animal purines will all tend to increase your uric acid. There is also another dietary issue that is bad for gout, yet not directly related to uric acid.
Beyond Uric Acid Diet
One of the mysteries of gout is why does heavy eating tend to cause flare ups. Many studies have shown that uric acid crystals grow very slowly. Yet, if that is true, why should gout attack so swiftly? A recent study has some of the answers, but also a real surprise.
Unfortunately, the gout study is at the cutting edge of scientific research. As such, it has more incomprehensible terms per sentence than most gout studies I have seen. Even the report title is impenetrable, so I will add it as a reference, and simply call this the Uric Acid and Stearic Acid Report.
Stearic acid is common part of diet. The National Cancer Institute lists the top stearic acid foods as:
Nuts/seeds and nut/seed mixed dishes, pork and pork mixed dishes, potato/corn/other chips, quickbreads, salad dressing, soups, crackers, other white potatoes.
The gout study found that a combination of uric acid crystals and stearic acid caused the most serious signs of inflammation. Surprisingly, uric acid crystals alone caused no reaction which may account for the situation where people suffer painless gout.
This reinforces my concept that a good uric acid diet is a healthy diet where all is eaten in moderation. Don’t be too restrictive, but don’t eat anything to excess. Other parts of these gout diet guidelines will help you understand all the aspects of uric acid diet that you need to know. If you still have questions, I give personal support in the gout forums.
Uric Acid Diet References
- Arthritis Rheum. 2010 Nov;62(11):3237-48. doi: 10.1002/art.27667.
Engagement of fatty acids with Toll-like receptor 2 drives interleukin-1β production via the ASC/caspase 1 pathway in monosodium urate monohydrate crystal-induced gouty arthritis.
Joosten LA1, Netea MG, Mylona E, Koenders MI, Malireddi RK, Oosting M, Stienstra R, van de Veerdonk FL, Stalenhoef AF, Giamarellos-Bourboulis EJ, Kanneganti TD, van der Meer JW.