A friend of mine has been suffering from severe gout for the past month. His leg was swollen although he has been really watching his diet and his foods. He asked me if he could consume milk and coffee in his case of gout

Let me first tell you about gout, a painful form of arthritis caused by an excess of uric acid in the blood.The body makes uric acid naturally when it breaks down chemicals called purines found in certain foods and drinks. The kidneys usually filter uric acid out of your blood, and then it leaves your body when you pass urine.

If the body makes too much uric acid, or the kidneys do not remove it from blood fast enough, it results in high levels of uric acid (hyperuricemia) that form uric acid crystals which could build up and settle into the joints. The sharp crystals clump together and cause sudden episodes of pain, swelling and other symptoms of gout..

Gout usually occurs in the extremities of the body, like feet or toes, causing redness, swelling and extreme pain. It appears in midlife and primarily in males.

Eating or drinking foods high in purines are more likely to lead to high uric acid levels in your body that cause gout. These foods include: Sugary drinks and sweets: Standard table sugar, which is half fructose (fruit sugar), breaks down into uric acid. Any food or drink with high sugar content can trigger gout.

Packaged food products and processed snacks can contain plenty of high fructose corn syrup.

Alcohol: Alcoholic beverages prevent your kidneys from eliminating uric acid, pulling it back into your body, where it continues to accumulate.

Organ meats: These include liver, tripe, sweetbreads, brains and kidneys.

Game meats: Specialties such as goose, veal and venison all contain high levels of purines.

Certain seafood: Herring, scallops, mussels, codfish, tuna, trout and haddock.

Red meat: Beef, lamb, pork and bacon.

Turkey: Especially processed deli turkey.

Gravy and meat sauces.

So, a balanced diet for gout sufferers includes foods that are high in complex carbohydrates, low in protein and low in fat, because foods that are high in fat and cholesterol are also high in purines.

Back to the question, posed by my friend about whether milk and coffee can be consumed by someone with gout. Although water, which helps dissolve uric acid, is the number one drink that you should take in case of gout, drinking milk can help your gout eventually. Milk and dairy products can help reduce the risk of gout because it helps get rid of uric acid. So, milk can prevent this from occurring.

It is recommended to drink at least four cups a day to reduce the risk of gout by 40 percent. But be careful to consume the low-fat milk, as the aim is to reduce the fat and cholesterol intake.

In the case of coffee, a study conducted at the University of British Columbia in, 2017 showed a direct link between increased coffee consumption and decreased uric acid levels. It appeared that men who consumed four cups of regular coffee a day had a drop of uric acid levels by 40 percent.

But when men consumed four cups of decaffeinated coffee, they had a drop of uric acid levels by only 20 percent.

It seems that there is a strong antioxidant in the regular coffee called phenol chlorogenic acid, which may have something to do with reducing uric acid levels.

Although a high consumption can help in decreasing high levels of uric acid, it is still not recommended for other diseases like hypertension.

All kind of teas have a high content of oxalic acid and are not recommended for people having gout.But for those who think that they cannot have milk or coffee, now you know, milk helps building your bone mass, will help you get rid of uric acid, thus prevents gout.

So, add low-fat milk to your coffee and for better results, skip the sugar.

Read Today's News TODAY... on our Telegram Channel click here to join and receive all the latest updates t.me/thetimeskuwait