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Cherries against gout

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Gout has long been linked with diet, particularly overindulgence in meat, seafood and alcohol, but few foods have been shown to cut the risk of gout. So findings from a new study published in Arthritis and Rheumatism are intriguing.

The 12-month study, involving 633 gout patients, suggests that the risk of gout flares is 75 per cent lower when cherries are combined with allopurinol than in periods with no allopurinol or cherries. Gout risk decreased with increasing cherry intake up to three servings of 10–12 cherries over two days.

Animal studies have shown that cherries reduce serum uric acid levels by lowering the activity of xanthine oxidase and xanthine dehydrogenase in the liver. And their high levels of anthocyanins, which possess anti-inflammatory activity (either through inhibiting cyclo-oxygenase activity or scavenging nitric oxide radicals)?may reduce the inflammation triggered by uric acid crystals.

Vitamin C has also been linked with reduced uric acid, but the amounts found in cherries are unlikely to have an impact on gout.

Readers' comments (1)

  • Every food is a medication, it just depends on the amount. That's what Paracelsus told in the 16th century, and what we easily forgot.
    The tart cherries are very good, if you take for some months a pound per day. However, I did not try that, I just repeat what I heard from other sources. I just wonder how to manage that.

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