Gout is caused by hyperuricemia (high uric acid levels in the blood). Risk factors for hyperuricemia include obesity, medications, and certain medical conditions (kidney disease). However, there is also a genetic predisposition as well. The management of gout is focused on decreasing uric acid levels. Medication can be effect at doing this, but also avoiding anything that may increase uric acid levels (or the body’s ability to excrete uric acid) can be helpful as well. Carbohydrates such as bread, pizza, and pasta do not increase uric acid levels. Alcohol (but beer in particular more so than other types of alcohol), organ meets (liver, kidney, etc), and seafood (notably shellfish) can increase uric acid levels.
About Rebecca Manno, MD, MHS
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Johns Hopkins University