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A Couple Cups of Coffee a Day Keeps Gout Away: A Look at the Inverse Relationship Between Coffee Consumption and Incidence of Gout

8 August 2015


Background: Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, affecting an estimated 6.1 million people in the United States alone. There are currently some widely accepted dietary and medical management treatments for gout; however, prevention strategies for this disease prior to diagnosis are lacking. Coffee has been shown in multiple studies to have a protective property against gout and high levels of uric acid associated with gout. Currently, coffee is not recommended as a preventative measure against developing gout and its symptoms. Can consumption of coffee reduce the incidence of gout and gout symptoms?

Method: An exhaustive search was conducted using Medline-OVID, CINAHL, Google Scholar, and Web of Science using the keywords: gout and coffee. Relevant articles were assessed for quality using GRADE.

Results: Two observational studies met inclusion criteria and were included in this systematic review. The two studies were prospective observational studies that showed a significant inverse correlation between coffee consumption and gout incidence. The relationships always correlated to coffee intake regardless of caffeine levels in the coffee. There was no correlation found between tea and gout, negating the relationship being due to caffeine but rather coffee itself.

Conclusion: It seems that increased coffee consumption could decrease the occurrence of gout. A recommendation to increase coffee consumption to prevent risk of gout can be made to certain patients. More research is needed to determine the mechanism of action of the constituents of coffee.


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