Lower Uric Acid, Prevent Gout Naturally Using a Low Purine Diet

Gout is a painful type of arthritis that has long been linked with overindulgence in alcohol, meat, offal and seafood. Gout symptoms can be alleviated with changes in diet that restrict the intake of foods that contain purines.

Your body produces uric acid naturally when it breaks down these purines, which occur in high concentrations in certain foods, such as offal meats, anchovies, some other fish such herring, and some vegetables such as asparagus and mushrooms.

Gout causes pain, generally in the toes and feet, when high levels of uric acid in the blood cause uric acid crystals to accumulate around a joint.

Changes in the diet to lower purine intake is not a complete treatment for gout, but it can help other remedies involving drugs and exercise. Being overweight and unfit are also risk factors for gout.

Adopting a healthy diet and improved lifestyle with lower alcohol consumption and regular exercise may also help control gout.

This article provides charts of the purine content of various foods to identify the high purine foods you should avoid and low purine foods you can use as replacements. It also provides tips for general diet changes that help provide a natural remedy for gout.

Source
High Purine Foods
High Purine Foods | Source
Low Purine Foods
Low Purine Foods | Source

Low Purine Diet Guidelines for Gout Control

Purines consumed in food account for about 50 % of the uric acid produced in the body and so restricting foods high in purines may help restrict uric acid levels. However, not all purine-containing foods have the same reaction.

It is important to note that purines occur in high levels in many vegetables, but these purines don't cause the uric acid buildup from purines in meat, especially offal such as liver. Fresh fruits and vegetables can help to reduce lactic acids and they are also beneficial to increase the alkalinity in the blood.

The foods with highest purine levels linked to uric acid build-up are shown in the table below. Also shown are helpful guidelines about low purine diets.

The General guidelines are -

  • Restrict the amount of meat (especially organ meats and offal products), poultry and fish such as anchovies, herring and mackerel, and other seafood such as shrimp, lobster and scallops.
  • Reduce the amount of saturated fat, which interferes with the body's ability to get rid of uric acid. High-fat meals and many processed foods also contribute to excess weight, which is linked to the risk of gout.
  • Restrict or avoid alcohol, which is known to reduce the ability of the body to elimination of uric acid. Drinking beer and red wine has been linked to increased risk of gout.
  • Restrict foods sweetened with fructose corn syrup, which is the only sweetener known to increase uric acid.
  • Increase the amount of complex carbohydrates by eating more whole grains, vegetables and fruits. This helps reduce the risk of gout
  • Increase low-fat or fat-free dairy products in the diet as replacement for full-cream products.
  • Increase the amount of water consumed and other fluids. Liquids can help flush uric acid from the body.

Suggested Menu for a Low Purine Diet


Breakfast

  • Whole-wheat toast with low-calorie spread
  • 1 serving of fresh fruit
  • Whole-grain, homemade cereal with low-fat milk
  • Freshly squeezed fruit juice
  • Coffee or Tea

Lunch

  • Lean meat, cheese or poultry sandwich on whole-wheat bread, with salad
  • Low-fat dip with celery or carrot sticks or side salad
  • Fresh fruit, such as stone-fruits, apple, pear or orange
  • Skim or low-fat milk

Evening Meal

  • Fresh fruit, such as berries or melon
  • Green salad with tomatoes, celery, rocket, cucumber and low-fat dressing
  • Baked potato with low-fat sour cream
  • Steamed or boiled vegetables
  • Baked or grilled chicken, lean meat grilled
  • One glass of wine.

Advice for Lowering Uric Acid

Things to Do
Foods to Avoid
Foods to Eat
Restrict meat / fish / poultry intake
Organ meats such as liver; kidney; heart
Fresh cherries; strawberries; blueberries and other red-blue berries
Avoid alcohol and processed foods
Selected fish and shellfish
Bananas
Lose weight if overweight
Meat and yeast extracts brewers and bakers yeast
Celery
Exercise regularly
Meat soups and stock cubes
Tomatoes
Drink 8-10 glasses of water a day
 
Vegetables including cabbage and parsley
Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables
 
Foods high in bromelain (pineapple)
 
 
Foods high in vitamin C (red cabbage; red bell peppers; tangerines; mandarins; oranges; potatoes)
 
 
Low-fat dairy products
 
 
Complex carbohydrates (breads; cereals)
 
 
Chocolate; cocoa
 
 
Coffee; tea

Low Purine Diet Guide

FOOD GROUP
LOW PURINE
MODERATE PURINE
HIGH PURINE
Purine Level
0-50 mg purines/100 g
50-150 mg purines/100 g
150-825 mg purines/100 g
Recommended Use
USE AS DESIRED
USE IN MODERATION
AVOID
Breads and Cereals
breads and cereals; noodles; rice; corn bread
Limit to 2/3 cup raw daily - Oatmeal; Limit to 1/4 cup raw daily - wheat bran; wheat germ
 
Fruit
All including juices
 
 
Vegetables
Most vegetables
Limit to 1/2 cup serving daily - asparagus; cauliflower; spinach; green peas; mushrooms
 
Protein Foods - Choose lean meats; poultry without the skin; and fish. Cook without added fat.
eggs; nuts; peanut butter
Limit of 1-2 servings daily for: meat; poultry (2-3 oz); fish; shellfish (2-3 oz); dried peas; beans; lentils (1 cup cooked)
liver; kidney; heart; brains; sweetbreads; game meats; goose; partridge; anchovies; sardines; mackerel; herring; scallops; mussels
Milk and Milk Products
All
 
 
Fats and Oils
All in moderation
 
Gravy
Soup
vegetable soups ; soups made with vegetable stocks
meat soups and broths
Meat extracts; meat base stocks and yeast extracts such as Oxo; Bovril; Marmite; Vegemite; and yeast taken as a supplement
Other
sugar syrup; sweets; gelatin;soft drinks; tea; coffee; cereal beverages (Postum); chocolate; custard; pudding; white sauce; condiments; salt; herbs; olives; pickles; relishes; vinegar; popcorn
 
Mince meat

Foods with Highest Purine Level (mg per 100g)

Food Serving ( 100g )
Purines ( mg )
Pig's Heart
367
Beef
266
Sprat (Smoked)
207
Tuna
178
Ox Kidney
172
Ox Liver
171
Redfish (Ocean Perch)
149
Calf (Neck Sweet Bread)
142
Baker's Yeast
136
Cured Herring
133
Ox Heart
133
Pig's Liver
132
Trout
128
Calf's Liver
119
Sheep's Spleen
118
Veal
112
Saithe (Coalfish)
107
Halibut
104
Lamb
100
Haddock
95
Pork
95
Mackerel Smoked
94
Chicken
91
Anchovy
88
Pig's Kidney
86
Pig's Lungs (Lights)
83
Pig's Spleen
78
Sheep's Heart
74
Liver Sausage (Liverwurst)
73
Herring Roe
72
Ox Spleen
71
Cod
66
Plaice
51
Luncheon Meat
33
Mussel
27
Limburger Cheese
13

© 2013 Dr. John Anderson

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Comments 3 comments

diogenes profile image

diogenes 3 years ago from UK and Mexico

Yeah...I am always dodging purines then forgetting and getting the red light on the toe again!

Useful article

Bob


tirelesstraveler profile image

tirelesstraveler 3 years ago from California

Some ailments take all the fun out of eating. Very good information. I will avoid purines like the plague.


Writer Fox profile image

Writer Fox 3 years ago from the wadi near the little river

It seems like diets are the cause of so many health problems. Food for thought!

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    Dr. John Anderson (janderson99)753 Followers
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