Uric acid builds up when the body makes too much of it or fails to excrete it. It is a waste product resulting from the metabolism of food. The level of uric acid in your blood can become elevated if your body produces too much or if it doesn’t efficiently dispose of it. It is very important to keep your diet in check to avoid food that increases the Uric Acid content in the body.
Diet Tips for High Uric Acid Patients:
Lower fat intake as excess fat reduces normal excretion of uric acid.
Liberal fluid intake to keep the urine dilute.
Restriction or elimination of alcohol.
What to Avoid:
- Shell fishes, red meat, mince meat, meat extracts, organ meats, fishes (sardine, roe, makeral).
- Whole pulses (masur, rajmah, chana, chole, etc.). Other dals are allowed.
- Vegetables and fruits – green peas, spinach, french beans, brinjal,cauliflower, mushroom, chickoo, custard apple.
- Use less salt while cooking. Avoid adding salt while cooking rice or in chapatti dough.
- Use adjuncts like tomato, vinegar, cocum, amchur, lime juice, curd, pepper powder to make the food cooked with less salt palatable.
- Remove the salt shaker from the table.
- Avoid salted nuts/ biscuits, papads, pickles, chutneys.
- Avoid excess consumption of processed and preserved foods; eg. Bakery products
- Caution – Do not overdo on salt substitutes as that might cause an electrolyte imbalance.
- Fresh cherries, strawberries, blueberries and other red-blue berries
- Vegetables including cabbage and parsley
- Foods high in bromelain (pineapple)
- Foods high in vitamin C (red cabbage, red bell peppers, tangerines, mandarins, oranges, potatoes)
- Low-fat dairy products
- Complex carbohydrates (breads, cereals)
- Chocolate, cocoa
- Coffee, tea
Although Purines (organic compounds, which create uric acid breakdown in the body) are found in vegetable sources, they don’t cause the same amount of uric acid buildup in the body that meat sources do. In fact, fresh fruits and vegetables reduce acid levels in the body and it is often advised to avoid red meats, organ meats and highly processed foods. Fresh fruits and vegetables are encouraged so the patient can increase alkalinity in the blood.
Therefore, rather than attempting to find foods that are free of purines and uric acid, it’s important to know how to increase the body’s alkalinity, which naturally reduces the body’s acidity. Fresh, non-processed foods, such as fruits and vegetables, are the way to go.
*Text Courtesy: Priya Jain and Pranita Mahajan, Dietician, P D Hinduja National Hospital & MRC, Mahim, Mumbai.