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Keto Diet and Gout: What You Should Know

Keto Diet and Gout: What You Should Know

The ketogenic diet or short keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet intended to place the body in a stable condition called ketosis. The common diet has also been related to changes in some medical problems, such as diabetes and heart disease, while better regarded as a way to lose weight quickly. There's some evidence that can also tend to relieve gout. According to the Arthritis Foundation, gout is a type of inflammatory arthritis that affects four percent of all American adults. It is important to remember when following a keto diet, that it is not for everyone, and entering ketosis will potentially cause flare-ups. More research on keto and gout is available here to help you determine if the keto diet is for you. When it comes to studies into the impact of a keto diet on gout it is a bit of a mixed bag. Here's what some experts claim.

What is Gout?

Gout is a widespread and complicated arthritis type that can affect anybody. It's marked by extreme, serious attacks in the joints with pain, swelling, redness and tenderness, often the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack will happen all of a sudden, sometimes waking you up in the middle of the night with the thought your big toe is on fire. The affected joint is sticky, bloated, and so tender that it can appear painful even to weigh the sheet on.Gout symptoms can come and go, but symptoms may be treated and flares avoided.


Gout happens as the joint accumulates urate crystals, which induces the irritation and extreme pain of a gout strike. Urate crystals can develop when the uric acid in your blood is high. Your body releases uric acid as it breaks down purines — substances naturally present in your bloodstream. Purines are also present in certain foods, including steaks, organ meats, and fish. Other foods also encourage higher levels of uric acid, such as alcoholic beverages, especially beer, and fruit-sweetened drinks (fructose). Uric acid usually dissolves in the blood and flows through your urine by your kidneys. But either your body releases too much uric acid, or your kidneys excrete too little uric acid, occasionally. As this occurs, uric acid may build up in joint or surrounding tissue, producing thin, needle-like urate crystals that cause discomfort, inflammation and swelling. 


Is Gout Beneficial?

Perhaps In 2017, Yale University researchers investigated how ketosis affects, which is the protein complex that causes the inflammation that leads to gout. Animal and human tests have found that less joint inflammation happened after a keto diet. Although the data is positive, the researchers concluded that there is a need for further trials before the keto diet can be used as gout therapy. Another reason gout will gain from keto diet is weight loss. Weight reduction is the most effective means of reducing uric acid levels and preventing flare-ups in gout.

Does it increase the risk of gout?

Probably. Keto diet is abundant in foods which are low in purine. Purine is a compound which is broken down into uric acid by the body. Gout occurs when blood is containing too much uric acid. Excess uric acid in a joint can develop needle-like crystals and cause discomfort, tenderness, swelling , and redness.The ideal gout diet is one low in purines, including fruits, beans , whole grains and non-fat dairy foods. A low-purine diet is recommended, in addition to treatment, to minimize the risk of gout. A 2012 study showed that when people first undergo ketosis, they experience an elevated risk of gout due to an rise in uric acid levels. The danger, however, is short-term, and will improve until your body adapts to ketosis.

Will it help to protect against gout?

No. No Data available suggests the keto diet may help target the source of the inflammation to avoid acute gout symptoms. But the treatment of the disease has not been confirmed.

Is the diet healthy for Keto?

The keto diet is usually considered safe for healthier people and can be of particular benefit to those with such illnesses, such as:

  • Class 2 diabetes
  • Résistance of insulin
  • Accountability
  • PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome)

Switching to a low-carb diet and being in ketosis can contribute to side effects, including symptoms of flu. Such effects are also referred to as "low-carb flu" or "keto flu." Once the body is accustomed to the diet, they are typically short-lived and improve.

Popular side effects encompass:

  • Headache 
  • Tiredness
  • Breakout
  • Brain Fog
  • Cramping knees
  • Bad Breath
  • Diarrhea and constipation


Is it safe for people with gout?

It's important to consult with your doctor before making any dramatic adjustments to your diet. Foods rich in purines, particularly from animal sources, are almost five times more likely to cause gout flare-ups. While various forms of keto diets do exist, they all contain high-purine foods.

Managing gout

Gout treatment typically requires a mixture of changes in the medicine, diet, and lifestyle. Gout therapies include anti-inflammatory nonsteroidal medications (NSAIDs) and corticosteroids. They are used to relieve the effects of acute attacks such as pain and swelling, and to monitor levels of uric acid to reduce potential attacks and complications. It's also advised to adopt a balanced diet that doesn't contain high purine foods and drinks. Foods rich in uric acid which are known to cause gout flare-ups include:

  • Cooked meat: beef , pork, lamb 
  • Organs: liver, heart, sweetbread
  • Seafood: shrimp, tuna, and anchovies
  • High-sugar snacks and drinks: pastries, dumplings and sweetened beverages

An article from a 2015 study indicates there is evidence that some foods and beverages may reduce the risk of gout flare-ups. Adding the following will be helpful to the diet:

  • Coffee
  • Low-fat dairy products, such as yogurt and milk
  • Vitamin C
  • Eating juice to the cherry: The juice will cure flare-ups by reducing uric acid levels in the body.
  • Drinking plenty of water: Water allows the kidneys to wash away uric acid, shorten the length of a flare-up and may symptom intensity.
  • Exercising and maintaining a healthy weight: Weight reduction reduces the levels of uric acid, and the chances of heart failure and stroke, all of which are more severe in gout people.


Bottom Line

The keto diet is a diet low in energy and high in fat. While the diet can have some proven health advantages, this is not for everyone. Work on its potential to reduce symptoms of gout is encouraging but more is required. Eating a healthy diet that reduces high-purine foods, and keeping a good weight and lifestyle, is definitely the safest way to go if you have gout. Your doctor will be able to help you decide the right treatment strategy.

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