Research published in the journal Clinical Nutrition determined that vegetarian diets are optimal for reducing risk of gout. A total of 13,935 participants in Taiwan were involved in research, titled “Vegetarian diet and risk of gout in two separate prospective cohort studies,” which cross referenced subjects’ self-report dietary habits with occurrence of gout.

In the first study, levels of uric acid were also monitored. The finding: Vegetarians who eat eggs and dairy had the lowest levels of uric acid concentration, followed by vegans and non-vegetarians. Vegetarians had lower risk of gout in the second study as well.

Gout is the most common inflammatory joint disease, the researchers wrote, and is a risk factor for kidney diseases, diabetes and all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. They added that prevalence of gout has doubled or tripled in many countries in the past decades, “making gout a public health threat that desperately needs preventive strategies.”

The researchers concluded: “Dietary strategies for gout prevention and management may use a healthy plant based dietary pattern as the foundation, with the addition of functional foods known to target the underlying gout pathophysiology.” Additional research is needed, they added.

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