Rise In Gout Blamed On Fructose In Soft Drinks

Gout sounds like something characters in Dickens novels get, but apparently it’s a modern affliction as well—at least in the U.S. where the number of cases has doubled in the past few decades. Now researchers are saying that “Men who consume two or more sugary soft drinks a day have an 85% higher risk of gout compared with those who drink less than one a month.”

To look in more detail, the team carried out a 12-year study of 46,000 men aged 40 years and over with no history of gout, asking them regular questionnaires about their diet.

Over the period, 755 newly diagnosed cases of gout were reported.

The risk of developing the condition was significantly increased with an intake level of five to six servings of sugary soft drink per week.

This link was independent of other risk factors for gout such as body mass index, age, high blood pressure and alcohol intake.

Diet soft drinks did not increase the risk of gout but fruit juice and fructose rich fruits (apples and oranges) were associated with a higher risk, the researchers said.

Until now, most anti-gout advice consisted of having men cut back on foods rich in purine like beer and meat, and asking them to not live in Victorian times. But now those with “severe treatment failure gout” may want to consider limiting how much soda they drink.

“Gout surge blamed on sweet drinks” [BBC News]
(Photo: Getty)