You Should Avoid These Beverages If You Suffer From Gout

We've heard time and time again that certain foods can benefit our health, especially when we're in need. Healthline suggests sipping on comforting chicken soup for colds. Drinking coconut water can replenish your electrolytes when you have the flu, and noshing on ginger can fight nausea. It is truly convenient that our fridges can double as medicine cabinets at times. However, the foods and drinks we consume can have the opposite effect on our health if we aren't careful. 

This is especially the case if you have a condition like gout. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis. Unfortunately, it is both common and painful, affecting one joint at a time. Occasionally, it can flare up, whereas other times, there may be no noticeable symptoms. There is no cure for gout, but you can prevent a flare-up by avoiding certain beverages.

Avoid alcohol and sugary drinks if you have gout

"Patients at risk for gout should avoid beverages with high purine contents," Dr. Jennifer Sloane, a rheumatologist at Temple University Hospital, told Everyday Health. "Ultimately, purines are converted by the body into uric acid. So a high purine diet will elevate uric acid levels, which can precipitate gout in the patient at risk."

Many beverages that are high in purines can be found at happy hour. "Beer contains a large amount of purines and has a strong association with gout attacks," Dr. Sloane continued. But it's not just beer — alcohol, in general, increases the amount of uric acid in the blood, which can trigger a gout attack.

If you're serious about lowering your risk of flare-ups, cutting out beer and distilled alcohol is a great start. The Mayo Clinic also recommends nixing sugary drinks, such as soda and juice, including those that are naturally sweetened. In addition to avoiding these beverages, those who want to manage their symptoms of gout are encouraged to stay at an optimal weight and maintain healthy eating habits to lower the risk of a painful attack. 

Foods and beverages can be the medicine we need when we need them most. However, it's helpful to get a full overview of what is safe to consume when you have gout to decrease your chances of triggering an attack.