Cherries for gouty arthritis

New and recent research suggests that management of gouty arthritis with pharmaceuticals is difficult because of the many drug contraindications. An alternative may be cherries!

What is gout? According to the NIH: National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases; “Gout is a common, painful form of arthritis. It causes swollen, red, hot and stiff joints. Gout occurs when uric acid builds up in your blood. This happens if your body produces extra acid or does not eliminate enough, or if you eat too many foods with purines, such as liver and dried beans. Pseudogout has similar symptoms and is sometimes confused with gout. However, it is caused by calcium phosphate, not uric acid.

Often, gout first attacks your big toe. It can also attack ankles, heels, knees, wrists, fingers and elbows.

You are more likely to get gout if you
Are a man
Have family member with gout
Drink alcohol

At first, gout attacks usually get better in days. Eventually, attacks last longer and occur more often. Uric acid buildup can lead to kidney stones. Untreated gout can cause permanent joint and kidney damage. You can treat gout with medicines.”

Researchers writing in the Journal of Investigational Medicine say yes, you can treat gout with medicines but it is challenging. Here is what the reaserchers said:

“Gouty arthritis is increasing in prevalence in men and women, particularly in older age groups (and is) associated with numerous comorbidities (diseases) that are increasing in prevalence (chronic kidney disease [CKD], hypertension, obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and cardiovascular disease) and that negatively impact long-term prognosis and quality of life.

Therefore, certain considerations and precautions are necessary when treating gouty arthritis in these patients.

For example, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can cause acute renal toxicity or worsen CKD and should be avoided in this population…Gouty arthritis is associated with renal, metabolic, and cardiovascular comorbidities that negatively impact overall health. The management of gouty arthritis in the presence of comorbidities is particularly challenging challenging because of ontraindications, the need for dosage adjustments, and polypharmacy.” (1)

So are there options? New research says yes – Cherries!

“A new study found that patients with gout who consumed cherries over a two-day period showed a 35% lower risk of gout attacks compared to those who did not eat the fruit. Findings from this case-crossover study published in Arthritis & Rheumatism, a journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), also suggest that risk of gout flares was 75% lower when cherry intake was combined with the uric-acid reducing drug, allopurinol, than in periods without exposure to cherries or treatment.” (2,3)

If you would like to explore the management of gout with our program of specialized diets, allergy elimination, supplements, detoxification, and other means to help control patient’s symptoms and decrease swelling. We have successfully treated patients for whom traditional therapies did not work, as well as those who did not want the risk or side effects associated with long-term steroid or immunosuppresant therapy.

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1.Marwah RK. Comorbidities in gouty arthritis. J Investig Med. 2011 Dec;59(8):1211-20.

2,3. “Cherry Consumption and the Risk of Recurrent Gout Attacks.” Yuqing Zhang, Tuhina Neogi, Clara Chen, Christine Chaisson, David Hunter, Hyon K. Choi. Arthritis & Rheumatism; Published Online: September 28, 2012 (DOI: 10.1002/art.34677).