Uric Acid is a byproduct of the metabolism of purines that are found in many food items. After digestion, the uric acid is released in the blood and eliminated in the urine through kidney filtration.
When the dietary intake of food containing purines is higher (excessive diet intake), or the filtration capacity of the kidneys is lower (renal failure), hyperuricemia, or elevated uric acid in the blood, may develop. This can lead to the development of uric acid crystals in joints and tissues causing a type of arthritis known as gout. Elevated uric acid in the blood reflects higher urinary excretion with a higher risk of kidney stones.
In addition to decreasing foods high in uric acid from your diet, your healthcare provider may also prescribe medications to reduce the uric acid in the blood as well.
1. What are the effects of hyperuricemia (elevated uric acid levels)?
When your kidneys are not functioning properly, they do not filter out uric acid properly, thus potentially leading to a number of health issues.
Elevated uric acid in the blood may cause;
- Damage of kidney impairing their function (Chronic Kidney Disease and Renal Failure)
- Kidney stones (renal colic, kidney failure due to stone-related obstruction)
- Flare-up of gout
- Damage to affected joints
2. What are some “DO’s and Don’ts” regarding a Low Uric Acid diet?
- Avoid or limit high-purine (uric acid) foods (see dietary recommendations)
- Avoid or limit alcohol. Alcohol increases uric acid production, thus further worsening hyperuricemia
- Limit meat to 3 ounces per meal
- Limit high-fat foods, such as salad dressings, ice cream, fried foods, & gravies. Fat holds onto uric acid
- in your kidneys
- Regular daily exercise
- Drink 8-12 cups of fluid daily – this will help reduce kidney stone formation and decrease uric acid crystals
- Don’t take baker’s yeast or brewer’s yeast as a supplement
3. Dietary recommendations table
Foods to limit and/or avoid
Acceptable food choices
Meats and Proteins
Milk and Diary
Fruits and Vegetables
Bread and Grains
Limit high-fat bread-like:
Fats, Oils and Condiments
- Arthritis Foundation Gout blog Accessed http://blog.arthritis.org/gout/
- Gout and Uric Acid Education Society Accessed
- American Journal of Kidney Disease; “Prevalence of CKD and Uncontrolled Among U.S. Adults: Results from NHANES 2007-2012”.