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Role of cherries for gout prevention

By Senior Editor
Food Pyramid -

Cherries and other fruits are long known as great sources of anti-oxidants that help in preventing chronic medical conditions. Moreover, fruits like cherries are considerably safe due to low caloric content and high fiber and nutrients. However, according to a latest research conducted at Boston University, it has been revealed that increasing the consumption of cherries on daily basis is directly related to a decrease risk of gout attack in patients with chronic inflammatory joint conditions.

What is Gout?

Gout is an inflammatory condition of joints that affects millions each year, thereby greatly affecting the quality of life by interfering with normal daily activities. Moreover, the cost of therapy and resulting side effects of medications greatly increase the budget of medical billing and expenses. Therefore a number of universities and medical institutes are looking for a less costly and more effective cure or treatment protocol for gout patients.

The pathophysiology of gout is directly linked to elevated levels of Urate in the blood that tends to deposit in the joint spaces and synovial fluid and leads to inflammatory reaction. Over time, a number of therapeutic interventions have been played out, but most of the pharmacological therapies provide only temporary relief.

However, as per the research studies and clinical trial conducted by Boston University under Prof. Zhang and his team, it has been concluded that cherries works by natural mechanism to decrease the Urate levels in the blood and by its anti-oxidant properties also relieves inflammatory reactions that help gout patients.

Recommended intake of cherries:

According to the researchers, any amount of cherry is preventive and beneficial at decreasing the risk of gout attack. However, it is ideally recommended to consume about 10 to 12 cherries a day. If you are consuming cherry extract, half a cup is enough to ward off gout attacks.

A few other recommendations are also made by the Boston University Research team:

  • Research paper also concludes that mere consumption of cherries for 2 days decrease the gout risk by 35%.
  • Using cherries and Allopurinol prevents the risk of gout flare or attack by 75%. Allopurinol is a drug used by gout patients to lower uric acid levels.
  • Combining cherries with your regular gout regimen is preventive against gout attacks as anti-oxidant in cherries targets the same enzymes as most anti-inflammatory drugs, commonly used in acute gout attacks.
  • The current regimen also allows the consumption of 2 to 3 servings per day and so far no absolute advantage has been observed by increasing the consumption to more than 3 servings per days.

The findings are confirmed and evidence provided in the report is supported by renowned medical institutes and universities like Harvard University in Boston, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore and other institutes throughout United States. However, it has also been suggested not to abandon current dietary and therapeutic regimen over cherry consumption only, as further studies are underway. A number of other clinical trials and research studies are underway to explore if cherries are preventive against other inflammatory joint conditions like Rheumatoid arthritis and other forms of arthritis.

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