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Gout associated with Beer Drinking

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Updated April 26, 2004

Bad news for beer drinkers, Dr Hyon Choi and her colleagues at Massachusetts General Hospital have found that the men who drink two or more beers a day are two and a half times more likely to get gout than their none non drinking counterparts.

The study reported in The Lancet and carried out over 12 years on 47,000 male medical staff found that wine and spirit drinkers, although they have an increased incident of gout, were less affected that those men who drank beer. It does not appear to be the alcohol content alone that is the culprit. Dr Choi believes it is more likely to be the levels of purines, a chemical which breaks down into uric acid and which in excess amounts causing gout, that is the problem. Beer contains more purines than spirits and wine.

Gout, a form of arthritis causing inflammation of joints, tendons and other tissues, is an extremely painful disease that affects mostly men. Read more about Gout.

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