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Gout Disease & Purines in Food


  1. Where can I find a dietitian who works with people who have gout? Answer
  2. For the last 5 months the days I work my feet ache and burn. Any help or suggestions I would greatly appreciate. Answer
  3. Please give me some information about the amount and type of dietary protein that can significantly increase the uric acid level in blood of normal individuals. Answer
  4. I need to know what foods to avoid feeding a person with gout. Answer
  5. I have just come down with a case of gout. Is there a diet that I can follow to reduce attacks in the future? Answer
  6. My wife had bypass surgery. She is fine now except that uric acid level in her blood is lightly elevated. What are purines? Answer
  7. I have gout, Can you furnish me with a diet low in purines? Answer
  8. I've been having problems with gout lately. Can you give me some help with my diet? Answer


Where can I find a dietitian who works with people who have gout?

The Medical Nutrition and Nutrition Entrepreneurs dietetic practice groups of the American Dietetic Association provide medical nutrition therapy based on your diagnosis. Dietitians often have their own private practice nutrition counseling services in addition to services provided in a clinic or hospital. You can find a dietitian at the American Dietetic Association. Include your zip code or city / state, the type of service you want (individual consultation) and expertise needed.


For the last 5 months the days I work my feet ache and burn. I'm a cashier so I am on my feet, but I've been at this job for nearly 10 years. I can tolerate the first 3 or 4 hours and then it's awful. Some days on my way home my feet hurt so badly they throb and hours later they still burn and ache. The throbbing is more around the toe area. Any help or suggestions I would greatly appreciate. Thank You,

I would recommend you make an appointment to see your doctor. The symptoms you describe could be a number of things like gout, diabetes, edema from heart disease or just standing on concrete. It could also be ill fitting shoes or bunions. So make an appointment with your doctor.


Please give me some information about the amount and type of dietary protein that can significantly increase the uric acid level in blood of apparently normal individuals.

Thank you very much. Please reply soon.

High uric acid levels in the blood cause uric acid crystals to build up in joints. This leads to gouty arthritis. Gout used to be controlled through diet by decreasing purines (a protein) found in meats, legumes and other high protein foods.

A drug, Allopurinol is now commonly used to control uric acid levels in the blood. If a person is unable to take this drug, he / she would want to limit eating certain protein foods.

Meats, anchovies, Anchovies, sardines, herring, mussels, tuna, codfish, scallops, trout and haddock (remove fish skin); bacon; organ meats (such as, liver, kidney); tripe; sweetbreads; wild game; goose, yeast extract supplements, asparagus, mushrooms, gravies, sauces and broth made from meat all contain purines. Alcohol also increases the production of uric acid. This can be a difficult nutrition therapy to follow. If you notice, this leaves fruits, vegetables and whole grains to eat!

Protein is needed to maintain and build muscle mass. Cherries and strawberries neutralize uric acid. A person should drink only distilled water also.


I need to know what foods to avoid feeding a person with gout.

It isn't protein that is limited, but foods high in purines many of which are also good sources of protein. Organ meats like liver, kidney, sweetbreads, brains, meat gravies and extracts, sardines, anchovies, herring, mackerel, scallops and most wild game are not allowed. More than one average portion of meat (beef, veal, pork, chicken or fish) is not recommended. Alcohol is also eliminated. Several vegetable sources of protein should be limited to once a day like dried beans and peas, asparagus, mushrooms, cauliflower and spinach. Water is recommended for hydration.

However the first treatment for gout is a drug called allopurinol.


I have just come down with a case of Gout. Is there a diet that I can follow to reduce attacks in the future? Any advise would be appreciated.

Yes you should follow a low purine nutrition therapy and lose weight if you are overweight. Read more below.


My wife is 43 years old. She is 54 kilograms and 158 centimeters. She had bypass surgery in September 1997. She is quite fine now, except that uric acid level in her blood is slightly elevated (7.2 milligrams). She exercises very regularly and maintains a strict diet, especially with regard to cooking oil, salt, fatty food, etc. What food should she avoid in order to decrease her uric acid level? We read somewhere that she should avoid purines. What are purines? I hope u will be able to help.

If your wife's blood uric acid level is elevated above 7.0 milligrams / deciliter (dL), then she probably has gout.

Purines break down in the body to uric acid, but food sources of purines only account for 50% of uric acid produced in the body. Uric acid crystals then lodge in and around joints which is what causes the pain, most often in feet. If left untreated, gout can cause permanent joint damage. Some doctors feel that gout is a pre-diabetic condition, but can also lead to rheumatoid arthritis. Xanthine oxidase which is an enzyme is responsible for uric acid formation and drugs to control gout lower xanthine oxidase.

Prescribed drugs to lower uric acid levels are the preferred mode of treatment (allopurinol). Your wife should ask her doctor what drugs he / she would recommend to lower uric acid and reduce joint pain. She should not take aspirin without her doctor's advice if she is on blood thinners after her bypass surgery as aspirin is also a blood thinner. Also, aspirin can increase potassium levels if she also has kidney disease.

Low purine diets can be helpful in addition to drug therapy. Food sources of purines are organ meats like liver, kidney, sweetbreads, brains, meat gravies and extracts, sardines, anchovies, herring, mackerel, scallops and most wild game. The following foods are allowed once per day: meat; fish; poultry; dried beans and peas; asparagus; mushrooms; cauliflower; spinach. Alcohol is not recommended because it causes dehydration and results in increasing blood uric acid levels. While organ meats are not recommended for low cholesterol / low saturated fat diets, even lean meat (poultry and fish) contains purines. Cooking oils, salt and fatty food influence blood cholesterol levels and high blood pressure, not uric acid levels though high cholesterol and high blood pressure often go hand in hand with high uric acid levels.

Unless her fluid intake is restricted by her doctor because of fluid retention in her feet or lungs or kidney disease. encourage your wife to drink around twelve 8 ounce glasses of water a day (3 liters) to ensure adequate hydration. If after her first voided urine in the morning, her urine should be colorless and odorless, then she is drinking enough water.

Considering your wife has several diet restrictions, I would recommend she talk to a dietitian in Bangladesh. According to my Healthy Body Calculator on Ask the Dietitian, your wife is in a healthy weight range for her height (45.2 - 55.2 Kg), so weight loss is not necessarily recommended.


I have gout. Can you furnish me with a diet low in purines? I cannot take the medication due to the blood thinner I am taking for a blood problem.

Gout is painful swelling in the feet. Medication is the treatment of choice for gout. I would suggest you get in touch with your doctor because there are some newer gout medications on the market that may not interfere with your other medications.

The uric acid level in the blood goes up in people with gout. Alcohol is not recommended for people with an elevated uric acid because it causes your body to lose water and may increase the uric acid levels in the blood. Also, foods high in purines break down in the body to uric acid. However, food sources of purines account for only about 50 percent of the uric acid produced within the body. The remaining uric acid breaks down from other sources within the body.

We used to prescribe a low purine diet, but the diet is not as frequently used. A low purine diet omits organ meats like liver, kidney, sweetbreads, brains, meat gravies and extracts, sardines, anchovies, herring, mackerel, scallops and most wild game. The following foods are allowed once per day: meat; fish; poultry; dried beans and peas; asparagus; mushrooms; cauliflower; spinach.


I've been having problems with gout lately. Can you give me some help with my diet?

With gout, the uric acid level in the body goes up and it is the cause of the painful feet you probably experience. Foods high in purines break down in the body to uric acid. However, food sources of purines account for only about 50 percent of the uric acid produced in the body. The remaining uric acid breaks down from other sources within the body.

High levels of uric acid increase the acidity of urine excreted by your kidneys. This increases the possibility of kidney stones. Fluid intake in the form of additional water up to two quarts per day helps ease the excretion of uric acid.

Current therapy for gout includes the use of medications to increase excretion of uric acid. A low purine diet that is limited to your Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of protein (50 grams for females and 63 grams for males), may also be recommended. Weight reduction for overweight people seems to reduce uric acid production. I would caution you against drastic dieting or fasting, which increases blood uric acid levels. In a fasting state, your body breaks down more muscle than fat and greater quantities of ketone bodies are produced. These ketone bodies inhibit uric acid excretion. People with gout who go on very low calorie (less than 900 calories per day), actually can cause their uric acid levels to go even higher.

Alcohol may precipitate attacks of gout. Alcohol dehydrates your body of water and this action will increase your body's uric acid levels. So if you have gout, don't drink alcohol.

You should call your doctor. Until you see him/her, you could follow a low purine diet for a few days. Avoid the following high purine foods: liver; kidneys; sweetbreads; brains; meat gravies and extracts; anchovies; mackerel; sardines; herring; scallops; dried beans and peas. Remember to ask your doctor to recommend a diet appropriate for you.




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