Gout and Turkey: Is Turkey Bad for Gout?

Gout is often associated with pain, discomfort, and suffering. It is never associated with the holidays even when the holiday season brings the gout-prone individuals closest to the food items that could bring about an attack. According to Johns Hopkins University, organ meats like hearts and livers and red meats such as pork, beef, and lamb increase the chances of getting a gout attack, which is no wonder why some people get it right after Christmas or some celebration. However, what of white meats like turkey? Does Thanksgiving also herald a gout attack?

According to the Mayo Clinic, turkey has a moderate amount of purine in it. It is the chemical precursor of uric acid, which is the main cause of gout attacks; the uric acid accumulates in the blood stream and causes urate crystal needs to accumulate in the joints of the big toe, which causes swelling and pain. Since there is purine in turkey, it can cause a gout attack even if it is not as high as those meats that were previously listed.

However, it does not mean that eating turkey at a Thanksgiving dinner would automatically bring on gout pains. The Mayo Clinic says that it can still be eaten, but it should be enjoyed in moderation. They recommend that a person limits eating turkey and poultry in general to only 4 to six ounces (or 113 up to 170 grams) on a daily basis. That should be enough to enjoy without totally getting incapacitated the next day.

Despite the sizeable amount that the Mayo Clinic has to offer, people should also take into consideration that when turkey is involved, other food items are also involved. They should also be wary of the beverages and side dishes – alcoholic beverages, beans, and mushrooms among many others – that come along with the turkey to ensure that they do not ingest food items that are moderately high in purines only to find out that they have eaten several varieties that would push them over the top.

Despite the risk that it poses, people who have gout can still enjoy turkey. They can still eat it, but still, there is a cautionary warning, especially when it is eaten with other food items that may have high purine content, too. As such, for people who enjoy their turkey during and after Thanksgiving dinner, it is still a possibility to eat, but off course, it is better safe than sorry. Eat only in moderation to avoid paying the consequences the next day.


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