Some people have asked how to reduce uric acid even more effectively than just by a low uric acid (low purine) diet. Are there any things we can do to help manage and reduce the uric acid we already have in our bodies?
Well, as luck would have it, yes there are. First, stick to a low uric acid diet, and for some help see if you can’t try the following:
No surprise here. Baking soda is the miracle powder already, for everything from upset stomachs to brushing teeth to doing the laundry. If you are worried about uric acid levels or suffering from gout, you can now look at baking soda in a whole new light.
Sodium bicarbonate makes your blood more alkaline. It does this (for you science buffs) by removing hydrogen ions. The alkalized blood is able to manage more uric acid without it crystallizing. And fewer uric acid crystals mean less pain and less likelihood of gout. Even more interesting, the already existing crystals often begin to dissolve in blood with increased alkalinity. This is accomplished with just one teaspoon of baking soda per day. All good news so far.
There are some caveats, though. You shouldn’t start ingesting baking soda to relieve uric acid crystals until you have discussed it with your doctor. The reason for this is that baking soda is high in sodium, and that may be an issue for you already. It could also raise your blood pressure, and is contraindicated for many prescriptions and medical conditions. So do check with your doctor before making baking soda your new best friend.
Cherries and Cherry Juice
While even a teaspoon of baking soda can be difficult to swallow for some, here’s a remedy for uric acid levels that is absolutely sweet! Cherries have been used for generations to treat gout as a home cure. Until recently, there have been few studies of their effects, but that is changing.
Tart cherries have grown a devoted fan base of arthritis sufferers who routinely consumed the fruit (particularly as juice) to help soothe symptoms. In 1950, a study by (Blau 1950) found that daily cherry consumption helped to relieve gout attacks and arthritis pain. After eating the cherries, the patients in the study were found to have lower blood levels of uric acid.
Several studies have confirmed this since then, including a study from the USDA’s Human Nutrition Research Center at the University of California, Davis where researchers found that healthy women (ages 20 to 40 years) who consumed two servings or 280 grams of cherries after an overnight fast showed a 15 percent reduction in uric acid levels, as well as lowered nitric oxide and C-reactive protein levels (Jacob 2003). The researchers concluded that compounds in cherries may inhibit inflammatory pathways associated with gout.
A 2008 study at Harvard University showed a strong link between moderate vitamin C usage and uric acid levels.
Greater intakes of total vitamin C were significantly associated with lower serum uric acid concentrations… An inverse dose-response association was observed through vitamin C intake of 400-500 mg/day, and then reached a plateau.
In other words, about 400mg or 500mg of vitamin C daily should help reduce the levels of uric acid in your bloodstream. There was no additional benefit found by taking any more than that.
Though fewer studies have been done on this, there is strong evidence to suggest that alfalfa has minerals and nutrients that effectively lower the uric acid levels in the blood. Alfalfa supplements are inexpensive and easy to come by, and by all accounts very good for you with no negative side effects. Certainly the fiber content alone is beneficial. A recommended dosage might be 2000 to 3000mg daily, though you should of course consult with your doctor before starting any program.
These few things should help you get started in reducing uric acid and dissolving uric acid crystals.