Certain foods and supplements have been found to lower uric acid levels in the blood. These include vitamin C (one study showed that 500 mg or more per day decreased gout incidence in men), bromelain (an extract from pineapples) and cherries, particularly tart cherries and tart cherry juice, which have also been associated with reducing the number of gout attacks. Drinking plenty of fresh, filtered water is also important to help flush uric acid from your system, particularly if you eat a lot of the types of foods and beverages that increase gout risk.
Foods to Avoid
- Alcohol and caffeinated beverages – These cause increased dehydration and interfere with uric acid elimination.
- Red and organ meats – The high uric acid content and saturated fat in red meats and organ meats like liver can lower the body’s ability to eliminate uric acid.
- Fructose – Fructose is known to increase uric acid in the body, so products sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup should be eliminated from the diet. Instead, people with gout should choose complex carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits and vegetables and low-fat dairy products. Pay particular attention to how many sugary beverages you consume, including fruit juice, and try to limit or eliminate them.
- Shellfish such as shrimp and lobster – These have high levels of purines that cause uric acid to form when the body breaks them down.
- Certain types of seafood – The following types of seafood are higher in purines than other types: anchovies, herring, sardines, mussels, scallops, trout, haddock, mackerel and tuna.