September 2021

DASH Diet Helps Lower Serum Urate Levels

Researchers from Boston wanted to understand the effects of dietary patterns on serum urate levels. In a 3-arm, parallel-design, randomized trial, participants with high blood pressure (BP) were assigned to one of 3 diets: control (typical American diet); the high-fiber fruit and vegetable diet (FV diet); or the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet. The 8-week study included 459 adults with systolic blood pressure <160mmHg and diastolic BP of 80-95mmHg who had not received BP medications. The FV diet was rich in fruit and vegetables, but otherwise similar to the control diet. The DASH diet is known for being rich in fruit and vegetables as well as low-fat dairy products, and reduced in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol. Serum urate levels were measured at baseline and after 8 weeks.

Of the 327 participants who completed the study, mean age was 45.4 ± 11.0 years; 47% were women; 50% were African American; and mean baseline serum urate level was 5.7 ± 1.5 mg/dL. (Gout is typically seen when the blood uric acid level rises above 7 mg/dL.) Compared to the control diet, the FV diet lowered the mean serum urate level by 0.17 mg/dL (P=0.051) while the DASH diet lowered the serum urate level by 0.25 mg/dL (P=0.004). Furthermore, the effects improved with increasing baseline serum levels (<5, 5–5.9, 6–6.9, 7–7.9, and ≥8 mg/dL) for those receiving the DASH diet (a reduction of 0.08, 0.12, 0.42, 0.44, and 0.73 mg/dL, respectively; P for trend=0.04); this trend was not seen for those receiving the FV diet.

The authors concluded that the DASH diet lowers serum urate levels, particularly among those with hyperuricemia and called for more research on the DASH diet among patients with gout.

Source: Juraschek SP, et al. Effects of dietary patterns on serum urate: results from a randomized trial of the effects of diet on hypertension. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2021;73:1014-1020. doi.org/10.1002/art.41614

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