Everything You Need To Know About Uric Acid
Uric acid is the waste product created by your body during the breakdown of purines. Purines are nitrogen-containing compounds that are found in the cells of plants, animals and even in humans. Purines are naturally created in the human body and can also be obtained from certain foods such as red and organ meats, seafood, raw legumes and alcoholic beverages.
Uric acid is absorbed into the blood and is poorly soluble or more difficult to dissolve and typically found in higher amounts in humans than animals due to a natural deficiency of involved enzymes during the breakdown process as well as a comparatively lower rate of excretion.
70% of uric acid is excreted through the kidneys and the remaining 30% is filtered out by the intestines. The kidneys filter uric acid out of the blood and deposits the compound in the urine where it leaves the body through each bowel movement. In the event that the kidneys fail to keep up with daily excretion, the intestines will increase its load to compensate for the decreased amount of work by the kidneys.
Uric acid levels in the blood are the tipping scale between the breakdown of purines and the uric acid excretion rate. In most cases elevated uric acid levels are an indicator of renal deficiencies or metabolic syndromes that can contribute to the development of gout or hyperuricemia in some people.
- Uric acid is the end product of purine metabolism, it is the waste product of this nitrogen-containing compound that can be found in certain foods such as red and organ meats, seafood, raw legumes and alcoholic beverages.
- Uric acid is absorbed and transported by the blood, it is deposited from the body by the kidneys and intestines that work in unison to filter the uric acid out of your blood and into your urine where it is disposed during bowel movements.
- Elevated uric acid levels can be an indicator for kidney deficiencies or metabolic syndromes that can contribute to the development of gout or kidney stones in some people.
Conversely, your body can also suffer from having too little uric acid. In these instances, low levels of uric acid has been linked to liver or kidney disease. On our - everything you need to know about hyperuricemia web page we discuss the various factors and activities that can contribute abnormal uric acid levels.
Uric acid levels can be determined through a simple blood test performed by your doctor. This test might be suggested by your doctor to test for gout, if you are currently in chemotherapy or if you suffer with chronic or recurring kidney issues.
A normal value for uric acid levels in the blood can range between 3.5 and 7.2 mg/dL. Values will vary based on many different factors such as sex, age, height, weight, family history, current conditions, medications and lifestyle. Your doctor will be the best resource to confer with when reviewing your specific value.
Results that fall within abnormal ranges can indicate liver or kidney disease/failure and can also help determine if you are suffering from gout. Low levels of uric acid are not as common and are also less of a health concern.
Greater-than-Normal (or over 7.2 mg/dL) levels of Uric Acid may suggest:
- Bone marrow disorders
- Diet high in purines
- Kidney stones
- Multiple Myeloma
Lower-than-Normal (or under 3.5 mg/dL) levels of Uric Acid may suggest:
- Diet low in purines
- Fanconi syndrome
- Kidney or liver disease
- Wilson’s disease
Abnormal uric acid levels can be the results of environmental, medical and personal healthy factors that include:
Excessive alcohol consumption
- Diet high in purines
- Certain medications, including diuretics and low-dose aspirin
- Certain diseases that influence a high cell turnover rate (leukemia, lymphoma or psoriasis
Addressing high levels of uric acid at first notice is often suggested and optimal. Fortunately, treatment options that reduce uric acid levels are straight forward and simple. The common suggested treatment options include:
Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption
- Avoiding foods high in purines
- Discontinuing medications that may be linked to elevated uric acid levels
- Maintaining a healthy lifestyle including nutrition and exercise
- Losing weight if you’re overweight
Finally, it is always a good idea to follow up with your doctor and consider further testing if your uric acid levels do not gradually stabilize after the aforementioned changes. Your doctor might prescribe medications targeted to lower uric acid levels if your levels are not originally met. Being proactive about your health in all aspects is an important part of living a quality of life. Be sure to work with your doctor to ensure you are getting the most out of your treatment options.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How are cholesterol and uric acid levels correlated?
Individuals who take medications for high cholesterol have an increased risk of elevated uric acid levels due to the mechanisms of the medications that affect your kidney function and metabolic processes.
Is there a connection between uric acid and yeast infections?
Having a yeast infection indicates that you may have poor micro intestinal balance, this means that the bacteria responsible for breaking down your foods are not present resulting in poor digestion of foods, particularly those high in purines.
Does bakers yeast or nutritional yeast help with uric acid?
Yeast is high in purines and can contribute to elevated uric acid levels. It is recommended to avoid or significantly decrease your yeast intake if you have high uric acid levels.
Does tea affect uric acid levels?
According to a study conducted in 2007, tea consumption has been found to increase serum uric acid levels.
Is traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) good?
Traditional Chinese Medicinal applications include: blood cupping (blood letting), taking burdock and saffron supplements as well as acupuncture.
What is the connection between uric acid, hyperuricemia and other cardiovascular / vascular diseases?
Hyperuricemia is state in which the patient has high serum uric acid levels. Neglected hyperuricemia can often result in cardiovascular and other vascular diseases if not addressed appropriately and immediately.
Does juice fasting help with uric acid?
There is no significant evidence that juice fasting is a better option for lowering uric acid levels. The best options are to follow a low purine diet, drink less alcohol and to be more active.
Will a vegan / vegetarian diet help with high uric acid levels?
Following a vegan/vegetarian diet will help you avoid many foods that have high purine levels.
High uric acid in babies / baby?
Speak with your doctor if you are concerned about uric acid levels in your infant.
Is uric acid determined by your DNA / Genetics / genes?
Predetermined genetics can play a role in how your body excretes uric acid. These genetic factors are discussed in our Everything you need to know about Hyperuricemia webpage.
Does MSG affect your uric acid levels?
There is no significant evidence or data that discusses the association between MSG and Uric acid levels.
What is uric acid and gout differential diagnoses?
Problems that are considered in the differential diagnosis of gout and uric acid are:
- Acute sarcoidosis
- Calcific periarthritis
- Congenital fructose intolerance
- Conjunctival calcinosis
- Hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase deficiency (Lesch-Nyhan syndrome)
- Malignant soft tissue tumors
- Milk-alkali syndrome
- Multicentric reticulohistiocytosis
- Pigmented villonodular synovitis
- Phosphoribosylpyrophosphate synthetase superactivity
- Psoriatic arthropathy
- Reactive arthritis
- Renal osteodystrophy
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Type IIA hyperlipoproteinemia
- Arthritis as a Manifestation of Systemic Disease
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Septic Arthritis
How are high Uric Acid and Polycystic Kidney Disease related?
Polycystic Kidney Disease can affect the functioning efficiency of your kidneys which are primarily responsible for the excretion of Uric Acid. This disease can cause an under secretion of uric acid, resulting in a buildup in the body.
Is there a connection between uric acid and cancer?
Uric acid levels can become elevated during chemotherapy and due to cancer medications. Additionally, Medical research has found that maintaining uric acid levels can significantly treatment strategies for cancer that is associated with hyperuricemia.
Does uric acid cause skin rash?
Uric acid is unlikely to cause a skin rash, it is more likely that you may experience skin reactions from certain medications or drugs you are taking. Speak to your doctor if you develop a rash or skin reaction.
How is are Uric Acid and Osteoarthritis associated?
Chronic uric acid induced inflammation can cause severe damage to the cartilage that cushions the ends of your joints. When left untreated, this can lead to permanent damage and the development of osteoarthritis which is characterized by the damage caused by the breakdown cartilage that is located at the ends of joints.
Metabolism of uric acid until it is excreted in the urine?
When you consume foods that contain purines, your body activates the xanthine oxidase enzymes which binds to the purine and breaks it down into uric acid. The uric acid is then travels through the intestine where 70% is absorbed through the blood and the remaining 30 continue to travel to through the intestine where it is excreted through bowel movements. The bulk of the uric acid that is absorbed into the blood, travels to the kidneys where it is filtered out of the blood and transferred to the urine and excreted when you urinate.
Inflammation of a joint caused by excessive uric acid?
Uric acid induced inflammation is a sign of gout.
Besides Gout, what other diseases is Uric Acid a causation of?
The – Everything you need to know about hyperuricemia web page provides further details on other risks that uric acid may cause.
Is there a connection between Lyme disease and gout?
There is no direct connection between Lyme disease and gout. However if you are already suffering from high uric acid levels, the diarrhea that may be caused by Lyme disease medications may lead to dehydration which can trigger a flare or worsen already active gout symptoms.
What is calcium pyrophosphate and uric acid crystals?
Calcium pyrophosphate dehydrate crystals are deposits that can collect around joints and cause pseudogout. Uric acid crystals are deposits that collect around joints and cause gout.
Does Uric Acid show up on an X-ray?
Uric acid will show up on x-ray if you are in advanced stages where you have developed tophi.
What kind of odor is caused from uric acid?
Your urine may be stronger or more deeply colored if you have uric acid due to the buildup and possible dehydration.
What is a Healthy Diet to maintain normal uric acid levels?
A diet that is devoid of food that is high in purines is the best one to maintain normal uric acid levels.
Can you eat yam on a uric acid diet?
You can eat yams in moderate amounts.
Uric acid and IBS connection?
Irritable bowel syndrome can lead to poor metabolism of purines in the body which can results in a buildup of uric acid.
Where can I get FDA Approved gout supplements?
Supplements are NOT FDA Approved, but good ones are made in a cGMP compliant FDA Registered facility. There are various Gout Supplements that you can buy from stores such as GNC, CVS, Walgreen's, Amazon, and others. In our opinion, the best gout supplement is Gout Complex which you can purchase at Amazon.
Does high uric acid levels cause a fever?
In some individuals, high uric acid levels can trigger flu-like symptoms.
What diet does the NHS recommend for Uric Acid?
The NHS recommends a diet that is low or devoid of foods that are high in purines. To see a good Low Purine diet, please see:
Does uric acid cause a fungus / fungal infection?
There is no significant information or research on the direct association of uric acid and a fungal infection. More than likely, it is poor dietary choices and lifestyle that can cause both high uric acid levels and a fungal infection.
Can I take these medications if I have high uric acid levels? Zoloft, zyrtec, adderall, Tylenol
Speak with your doctor about your concerns when taking new medications, especially if you have elevated uric acid levels.
Can I smoke if I have high uric acid? Will nicotine affect my uric acid levels?
Smokers generally have higher levels of uric acid, it is best to stop smoking.
How does obesity affect uric acid levels? What about weight gain?
Obesity is a common characteristic among patients with gout and high uric acid levels. Excessive weight gain can lead to uric acid being deposited into fat tissues.
Is gout a disease?
Gout is a disease characterized by the accumulation of urate crystals in your joint.
What’s a good smoothie to take to help with uric acid levels?
Any smoothie that is low in added sugars and high in hydrating products (such as water or coconut water) are good components of a good smoothie.
Is there a connection between high uric acid and psoriasis?
A 2014 study found that a totally of 67 patients out of 338 (20%) who had psoriasis also have hyperuricemia or high uric acid levels. This association is likely linked to lifestyle factors that can contribute to a poor immune system.
Is there a connection between high uric acid and psychosis? What about schizophrenia?
According to a 2012 study attention was addressed to schizophrenic patients who were at high risk of developing metabolic syndrome. It was found that the patients who had lower uric acid levels are less likely to develop metabolic syndrome.
Does high uric acid cause hair loss?
Elevated uric acid levels are not likely linked with hair loss. It is more likely that other underlying health factors can contribute to hair loss as well as medication you are taking for uric acid.
What is the half life of uric acid?
Uric acid has a half-life of 2.2 minutes at a pH of 7.4 and 98.6 Fahrenheit.
Do you recommend taking Epsom salt baths for uric acid?
Epsom salt baths can be helpful in relieving pain caused by uric acid induce inflammation.
Can you recommend good naturopaths to help with my high uric acid levels?
What’s the correlation between high uric acid and eczema? What about other skin problems?
Uric acid is unlikely directly associated with skin conditions. Instead there may be similar causation factors such as poor diet lifestyle choices that can contribute to both elevated uric acid levels and skin conditions.
Can I drink baking soda to get rid of my uric acid?
Baking soda is a popular home remedy among gout sufferers who use a mixture of baking soda and water to help flush uric acid out of their body.
How to get relief from uric acid?
The best way to avoid complications from abnormal uric acid levels is to make necessary lifestyle changes to maintain your levels.