Purines (specific chemical compounds found in some foods)
are broken down into
uric acid. A diet rich in purines from certain sources
can raise uric acid levels in the body, which sometimes leads to
gout. Meat and seafood may increase your risk of gout. Dairy products may lower your risk. One study found that purines in
vegetables do not increase the risk of gout.1
To diagnose gout, blood and urine tests are needed but may not always give the answer.
Demonstrating high uric acid in the blood is essential, but you can have a high level of uric acid without having gout. Or you may have normal uric acid levels at the time of a gout attack.
To confirm the presence of gout, fluid drawn from the affected joint may be examined under a special polarizing microscope to see if it shows the characteristic crystals.
X-rays are useful in confirming long-term or chronic...
Organ meats, such as liver, kidneys, sweetbreads,
Meats, including bacon, beef, pork, and
Any other meats in large
Anchovies, sardines, herring, mackerel, and scallops
Foods to eat occasionally (moderately high in purines, but may not raise your risk of gout):
Fish and seafood (other than high purine
Oatmeal, wheat bran, and wheat germ
Foods that are safe to eat (low in purines):
Green vegetables and tomatoes
and fruit juices
Breads and cereals that are not
Butter, buttermilk, cheese, and
Chocolate and cocoa
Coffee, tea, and carbonated
Peanut butter and nuts
Dairy products that may lower your risk of gout:
Low-fat or nonfat milk
If you have experienced a gout attack or have high uric acid
in your blood (hyperuricemia), it may help to reduce your intake of meat,
seafood, and alcohol.2
Changing your diet may help lower your risk of
having future attacks of gout. Doctors recommend that overweight people who
have gout reach and stay at a healthy body weight through moderate daily
exercise and regulation of their fat and caloric intake.