Recently, gout medical studies have found that coffee can actually be beneficial for treating gout. The results of these studies are very interesting as coffee has long been considered a beverage that should be avoided by gout sufferers, as it is believed caffeine raises uric acid levels (increased uric acid levels in the blood is the main culprit behind gout attacks. Gout is characterized by swelling and intense pain in an affected joint – commonly the big toe). However, though caffeine may still be a risk factor, there appears to be an ingredient(s) in coffee that has the opposite effect.
Gout medical research that concluded in the spring of 2007 discovered that the more coffee men consume the lower their risk of gout. In this Canadian/American study which was published in the Arthritis & Rheumatism journal June 2007, it was found that men who drank a minimum of 4 cups of coffee daily, lowered their gout risk by as much as 40%.
The study was based on data that was collected from over 45,000 male medical professionals who participated in the study. It was found that after 12 years of study, just over 750 of the more than 45,000 men who drank tea and coffee developed gout. Based on self-reports kept by each medical professional, those conducting the study were able to determine that while tea had no effect, the more coffee the men consumed, the more they reduced their risk of developing gout.
The gout medical study found that men, who drank 1 – 3 cups of coffee per day, lowered their risk of a gout attack by 8%. However, those who drank 4 – 5 cups per day reduced their risk by 40%. Additionally, those men who proved to be ‘coffee addicts’ and drank 6 or more cups per day had almost a 60% lower gout risk.
On the other hand, it was discovered that men who drank 1 – 3 cups of decaffeinated coffee reduced their risk by 33%, while those who drank 4 cups of decaf or more, only reduced the risk of gout by 27%.
Although the medical research team does not know what the exact substance or substances within coffee that reduce the risk of gout, the gout medical team thinks that phenol chlorogenic acid, a strong antioxidant that exists in coffee, may be one of the major factors. Furthermore, it should be mentioned that the team believes that caffeine in coffee does not contribute to the reduction, as tea which also contains caffeine does not appear to offer any benefits.
It is important to note that the researchers focused their study on men aged 40 and older. Their reason for this was because men 40 years of age and older make up the highest gout population. Therefore, although coffee appears to make a difference in the average man that fits this age group, it is not known if coffee has the same gout reducing effect on women and younger men.
More studies will need to be conducted to confirm the precise reasons why coffee reduces the risk of gout. Therefore, while increasing the number of cups of coffee you drink per day may lower your chances of gout, the increase in coffee may not be beneficial for other health conditions. Therefore, be sure to talk to your doctor about the gout medical coffee study, and seek his/her advice before you consider increasing your coffee consumption.