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What foods are beneficial for gout?

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VegetablesCherriesLow fat dairyWhole grainsFoods to avoidMedical treatmentSummary
Several foods can be good for gout, including vegetables, fruits, low fat dairy products, and whole grains. 
Medically reviewed by Adrienne Seitz, MS, RD, LDN
Written by Uxshely Carcamo
Updated on April 4, 2023

Gout is a type of arthritis that can cause swelling and pain in your joints. It’s caused by high levels of uric acid building up in the joints. Gout usually affects the big toe but can also affect other joints, such as your ankles, fingers, and knees. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that gout can be managed and treated with medication and lifestyle changes. Certain foods can help prevent future flares of gout and reduce your symptoms. 

Research suggests that certain diets are especially good for gout, including diets high in:

  • vegetables
  • fruits
  • nuts
  • legumes
  • low fat dairy
  • whole grains


Vegetables that are good for gout, including broccoli and cauliflower
Johannes Hicks/EyeEm/Getty Images

The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMSD) recommends people with gout eat plenty of vegetables. Vegetables can add fiber to your diet and help prevent gout flare-ups. 

More research is needed, but vitamin C may help lower uric acid levels. Eating vitamin C-rich vegetables may be especially helpful. Some examples include:

  • cabbage
  • broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • cauliflower 

Cherries and other fruits

There is some evidence, including a 2019 study, that eating cherries may improve gout symptoms.

In the studies, people regularly drinking cherry extract or juice had fewer gout flare-ups. You may need to consume cherries or cherry juice often to get the benefits. 

Vitamin-C-rich and low sugar fruits, such as blueberries and strawberries, could also be a helpful addition to your diet. 

Low fat dairy 

The calcium and vitamin D in low fat dairy products like yogurt, cheese, and milk may help with gout. 

Research suggests that eating low fat dairy products may lower uric acid levels. The NIAMSD also recommends including low or fat-free dairy to manage gout symptoms. 

Whole grains 

Whole grains such as oats, quinoa, and brown rice are high in fiber and are recommended as gout-friendly food.

You may be able to reduce gout by following the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan, which is recommended for people with hypertension

The DASH way of eating is especially helpful for people who have gout and high blood pressure. A DASH diet includes lots of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.

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Foods to avoid with gout 

Research suggests that a diet high in red and processed meat, sweet foods, and refined grains can make gout worse. 

If you have gout, limiting the following foods can be helpful. 

Foods high in purine

The CDC says that eating foods rich in purine can cause high levels of uric acid. The body breaks purine down into uric acid.

Foods high in purine include:

  • organ meat
  • red meat
  • some types of seafood, such as sardines, scallops, and trout


If you have gout, the CDC suggests limiting your alcohol intake. Beer and hard liquor can be especially unhelpful for people with gout. 

Alcohol can increase uric acid levels, and may trigger gout flare-ups. Alcoholic drinks are high in purines.

Foods high in fructose

Fructose is a type of sugar. The CDC recommends that people with gout avoid consuming many high fructose foods.

Foods high in fructose include:

  • soda
  • cookies and cakes
  • honey
  • fruit juices
  • some cereals

Refined carbohydrates and ultra-processed foods

Refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries, and ultra-processed foods like french fries, can be unhelpful for gout. Research suggests that these foods can worsen gout symptoms and trigger flares. 

Medical treatment for gout  

You may be offered medication to manage gout. According to the CDC, some medications your doctor may recommend could include:

  • Anti-inflammatory medications: You can often get anti-inflammatory medications over the counter (OTC) from a pharmacy. These medications can help reduce swelling and pain. 
  • Colchicine (Colcrys): Colchicine is a medication that helps with gout pain. It may be most effective when taken as soon as your symptoms appear. 
  • Corticosteroids: Corticosteroids can help with your pain and reduce any joint damage. Your doctor may inject this medication directly into your joint, or you may take it by mouth. 
  • Medications to lower uric acid levels: Certain medications can lower the amount of uric acid in your body. These medications can include: 
    • uricosuric agents to help the kidneys remove uric acid from your body
    • xanthine oxidase inhibitors to stop your body from producing uric acid

A doctor can help you to find the right medication options for you. 

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No specific diet can completely cure gout. But eating a healthy diet can help you manage symptoms and prevent future flare-ups. 

Foods that can help with gout include vegetables, fruits such as cherries, low fat dairy, and whole grains. Foods to limit when you have gout include red meat, certain seafood, alcohol, and sugary and ultra-processed foods.

By managing your diet, you can reduce your gout flare-ups and start to feel better.

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