Gout is one of the most common types of arthritis that causes severe pain, swelling, and stiffness in a joint, typically affecting the joint in the big toe. This condition is caused by excess uric acid in the bloodstream. Earlier studies on vitamin C have reported that higher amounts of it can help increase the amount of uric acid eliminated through the urine.
For the study, the researchers assessed the vitamin C intake of more than 46,000 men between the ages of 40 and 75 for more 20 years. Every four years, the participants completed mailed health questionnaires related to their diet and vitamin C intake. They also filled out another questionnaire assessing gout.
In the 20-year study, the researchers documented 1,317 new cases of gout. The researchers also observed that the men who consumed the highest amounts of vitamin C had the lowest risk of suffering from gout. Those who took 1,500 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C or more each day for two decades were 45 percent less likely to experience gout, in comparison to those who only took less than 250 mg of vitamin C per day. Those who took 500 mg of vitamin C per day had a 15 percent lower risk, while those who took 1,000 mg per day had their risk reduced by 30 percent.
Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that taking vitamin C can cut the risk of gout. (Related: Gout: Another metabolic disorder that can be controlled through lifestyle.)
Treating and preventing gout naturally
People with gout can control gout attacks and reduce symptoms naturally by moderating their diet. For one, they should avoid low-carbohydrate diets as this prevents the body from burning fat stores properly. In turn, this can lead to the release of substances known as ketones into the bloodstream. This increase in ketones can lead to a condition called ketosis, which can increase the level of uric acid in the blood.
In addition, it is important to refrain from eating a lot of foods that contain high amounts of purine. Avoiding purine-rich foods ensures that the levels of uric acid in the blood do not get too high. Some of the foods high in purine you need to avoid include anchovies, beef kidneys, brains, peas, game meats, gravy, herring, liver, mackerel, mushrooms, sardines, scallops, and sweetbreads. However, there are also certain foods that will not trigger gout attacks, worsen symptoms, and affect uric acid levels even though they contain purine. Such foods include asparagus, beans, and other plant-based foods.
Read more news stories and studies on preventing gout naturally by going to Prevention.news.