Those who suffer with symptoms of gout, or are worried about suffering in the future, will often wonder whether certain foods or drinks, including alcoholic drinks can cause gout, and how to avoid them, or cut down on them.
One of the main culprits for causing gout has been alcohol and, in particular, consumption of certain types of alcohol.
Drinking a glass of red wine is a pastime that many people enjoy from time to time in moderation. With this in mind, does red wine cause gout?
Gout sufferers have higher levels of uric acid in their body than the average person, which can end up leading to painful gout flares when it builds up around the joints. There are a number of different types of food and drink that are thought to increase the chances of gout by triggering uric acid build-up.
What is Gout?
Gout is a condition that causes bouts of severe pain and swelling inside and around the joints. Gout is a type of arthritis and occurs in people who have high levels of uric acid present in their blood. Under normal circumstances, the body will get rid of excess urate through the kidneys and urine. If the levels become too high however, sodium urate crystals will start to form, causing pain and in some cases debilitate victims. Red wine drinkers, and those who enjoy any type of alcohol should be wary however, as alcohol consumption, if excessive, can lead to an overproduction of uric acid and the kidneys excreting lower levels of uric acid, with alcohol being excreted instead.
As a condition, gout mainly affects men over the age of 40 and women after they have gone through the menopause, though it is a more common condition for men. One to two out of every 100 people in the UK is affected by gout on some level.
Symptoms of Gout
If you have been drinking red win and you are worried about it causing gout, keep an eye out for some of the following symptoms:
- The main gout symptoms are linked to sudden joint pain, including the big toe, ankles and elbow joints, knees and in your hands. The pain can appear out of nowhere and be severely debilitating.
- Your joints may feel hot and tender to the touch
- The skin around the affected joint may become shiny and bright red
- Your joint may swell for a period of time
- As swelling comes down you may experience flaky, itchy skin around the affected area.
All of your joints can be affected by gout, with the big toe one of the most common to show symptoms, but it is not limited to just the toes as your hands, knees, elbow and ankle joints are also common areas of complaint and if left untreated, it’s not uncommon for more than one joint will become affected.
Pattern of Gout Pain
One of the reasons people ask ‘does red win cause gout?’ is because of the general pattern of gout symptoms being at night. Wine (white wine and red wine) and gout are often linked due to people mainly drinking red wine and other alcoholic drinks to unwind at night, after their working day and before sleep.
Gout attacks most commonly take place at night and are known to develop very quickly over the course of a few hours. The pain and swelling can last anywhere from three days up to 10 days in most cases, but it can often reappear unless treated early.
You can never predict when gout will attack next, or how severe it will be, but you can keep on top of gout triggers and what are the running themes that are specific to you when gout re-appears.
Causes of Gout
Keeping a check on the triggers of gout is important, especially your own personal triggers as it can change from person to person. Here is a breakdown of the different things that could trigger an attack of gout.
Purine High Foods – purines can found in certain proteins, with any food that is high in purines able to raise levels of uric acid in your blood. If you eat too much liver, certain types of seafood, such as mussels and salmon, or spinach and similar vegetables, you could set off gout. However, in most cases your body will be able to deal with the build-up of uric acid, however, in certain cases it might need a bit of help.
Purine in Alcohol – High levels of purines can also be found in certain types of alcohol, including mass-produced beer, stout and port. Not only does alcohol, mainly beer, whisky and wine, increase your chances of suffering gout, but it also puts you at risk of dehydration, which is another gout trigger. Wine in moderation will not likely cause gout attacks, and the same can be said for all alcohol, enjoy it in moderation but be wary of the risks attached to excess drinking.
Medical Conditions – Existing medical conditions and surgical procedures may increase the levels of uric acid in your body. If you do suffer from gout it is vitally important that you alert your GP or doctor before undergoing any medical procedure or increasing/taking new medication.
So, is red wine bad for gout? Yes, if consumed beyond moderation, but if you drink white wine to excess, whisky or beer, this will also increase your chances of suffering gout.
Does Red Wine Cause Gout?
It had been thought until recently that red wine was not a cause of gout, but a study in The American Journal of Medicine in 2014, led by rheumatologist Dr. Tuhina Neogi of Boston University, concluded that any type of alcohol can trigger gout.
If you drink a single glass of red win in a 24-hour period, or any other type of alcohol, your risk level of suffering a gout attack would not significantly increase. The change comes when consuming more than one to two drinks per day, with the study indicating an increase of 36%, and up to 50% when a fourth drink is added. Within the study wine showed up to be a significant trigger, more than doubling the risk of a gout attack when compared with drinking no wine at all. A difference of 138% of recurrent gout attacks with red and white wine, or a 75% increase in risk when two to four beers were consumed 24 hours before an attack.
Treatment for gout is vitally important, and treating it as early as possible even more so. Foods with high purines and gout, wine and gout and other types of food and medication linked to gout should all be understood. Finding out your own symptoms and triggers for gout should help you alleviate potential future problems, but know that there is a way to treat it should you suffer.
Uriciplex has been designed to be a safe, natural remedy that targets the root causes of gout. Side effect free, it relieves pain and targets high uric acid. So if you have been wondering about the links between red wine and gout, and whether your alcohol intake has caused inflammation and pain in the past, this could be the answer. Firstly remember drinking wine in moderation will help you lower the risk of suffering gout flares, but also using a powerful natural supplement like Uriciplex will help to eliminate high levels of uric acid that are known to cause it.Does red wine cause gout? Not alone, no, but if you drink wine to excess it can be a trigger for gout and bring on severe pain and debilitation. For many of us, a small glass of red wine in the evening is a wonderful thing to unwind with, just be careful, drink in moderation and understand that too much of a good wine can lead to gout.