- swelling and discomfort in the joints
Gout is caused by a buildup of uric acid in the body, which causes small crystals to form in your joints. The body naturally makes uric acid, but will produce more if you consume food and beverages that contain high levels of a chemical called purine.
Usually gout affects the joint where your big toe meets your foot. Symptoms flare up and hit suddenly, reducing your ability to carry out everyday activities.
A doctor may prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), corticosteroids, and drugs that block production uric acid. However, it appears eating pineapple could reduce some of the painful inflammatory symptoms of gout flareups.
Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain, which is known to reduce inflammation and aid digestion. While there are no studies directly linking bromelain to gout,
Pineapple is rich in fiber, a nutrient that helps keep our digestive tracts healthy. In research on mice, scientists have found that diets high in fiber may reduce inflammation caused by gout. High fiber foods also tend to be plant based and low in purines, which can help gout patients avoid flareups.
One cup of pineapple chunks contains 7 percent of your daily requirement of folate. While there’s no proven link between folate consumption and reduction of gout symptoms,
One cup of pineapple chunks contains 131 percent of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C. According to the Mayo Clinic, supplements that contain vitamin C can reduce the body’s uric acid levels.
However, studies on vitamin C’s effects on gout patients haven’t found a clear link between intake of extra vitamin C and reduction in the number and intensity of gout flare-ups. One 2013 study found that consuming a vitamin C supplement did not significantly help reduce uric acid levels in gout patients.
But incorporating enough vitamin C in your diet may prevent gout according to a
Adding pineapple to your daily diet may help prevent gout flare-ups and reduce the intensity of your gout symptoms. Aim for one serving of pineapple, which is equal to one cup of fresh pineapple chunks. Avoid sugary drinks containing pineapple, or pineapple desserts.
Pineapple is delicious when eaten fresh. It can also be added to salads and smoothies, among other dishes.
When designing your diet to reduce your gout symptoms, you’ll want to focus on consuming foods and beverages low in purines and high in anti-inflammatory nutrients. Besides pineapple, other foods that are good to eat if you have gout include:
- dairy products, especially low fat dairy
- fruits, especially cherries
- herbs and spices
- legumes, such as lentils and soybeans
- plant based oils, such as olive and flax
- whole grains
Always drink plenty of water, which can help prevent uric acid from building up in your body. You may also want to drink a small amount of coffee or green tea daily, as experts say this may also reduce gout symptoms.
If you have gout, you’ll want to avoid foods high in purines and added sugars, and also foods low in nutrients. These foods can raise the uric acid levels in your body, leading to a gout flare-up.
- added sugars, such as honey, agave and high fructose corn syrup
- candy and desserts
- fish and seafood
- game meats
- organ meats
- red meats
- refined carbs (such as white bread and cookies)
If you think you have gout or are experiencing increasingly frequent or intense flare-ups, you should make an appointment to see a doctor. In some cases, gout cannot be managed with changes to diet alone. You might require medication to get your gout under control.
Additionally, if you leave your gout untreated, it can lead to more serious complications, such as:
- advanced gout that causes lumps (tophi) to form under the skin
- kidney stones
- recurrent gout that causes destruction of joints
Gout is a common but painful condition caused by the buildup of uric acid in the body. If you have gout, sticking to a prescribed treatment plan, including a low purine diet, can help reduce the frequency and intensity of your flare-ups.
However, research suggests that specifically adding nutrient-rich pineapple to your diet may further alleviate the pain and inflammation caused by your gout with virtually no risk of any adverse effects.