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Can dietary changes help lower uric acid and prevent gout?

Yes, dietary changes can help to prevent gout. However, there are some individuals who may still get frequent gout attacks, even with optimal diet, and  will need to take medications to reduce gout attacks. Avoiding foods such as meat, sardines, bacon, mussels, shrimp and yeast, as well as avoiding alcohol can decrease chances of a gout attack.
Howard E. Lewine, MD
Hospitalist
Yes, diet can help lower uric acid and prevent attacks of gout, but not by much.

On average, only a small percent of the body's uric acid, about 10%, comes from the diet. But for some people, a low "purine" diet can make a difference.

It's always worth a try. You should try to avoid foods that are high in purine, or at least keep them to a minimum. Foods that are high in purine include:
  • All meats, especially organ meats
  • Beans, peas and lentils
  • Cauliflower
  • Meat stock and gravy
  • Mushrooms
  • Seafood, especially sardines and anchovies
  • Spinach and asparagus
  • Yeast and yeast extracts
Also, too much alcohol, especially beer, can raise uric acid levels and increase gouty attacks.

By the way, drinking coffee doesn't affect uric acid blood levels or cause gout. And always drink enough water to avoid dehydration.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.