Food, Drink, and Herbs: Alternative Therapies and Gout
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Gout was first recognized as a distinct clinical entity in antiquity. Our understanding of the epidemiology and treatment of gout has evolved over millennia intertwined with observations about social class and plant and animal sources of food, beverages and medicines. Investigators have identified various aspects of diet that relate to gout risk and recurrence. Some of our most useful medications for the treatment of gout were developed from herbal precursors. Traditional dietary recommendations for gout patients have included limiting high purine meat and alcohol consumption. More recent work suggests diets leading to weight loss through calorie and carbohydrate reductions may be effective for lowering serum urate levels, as well as the risk of gout.