November 12, 2010

High-Fructose Beverages Associated with Gout in Women

(Ivanhoe Newswire) "“ Consumption of fructose-rich beverages, such as sugar-sweetened sodas and orange juice is associated with an increased risk of gout among women. Gout is an incredibly ppainful type of arthritis.

"The increasing disease burden of gout in the United States over the last few decades (e.g., an annual incidence of 16/100,000 in 1977 vs. 42/100,000 in 1996) coincided with a substantial increase in soft drink and fructose consumption," Hyon K. Choi, M.D., Dr.P.H., of the Boston University School of Medicine, and colleagues were quoted as saying. "Fructose-rich beverages such as sugar-sweetened soda and orange juice can increase serum uric acid levels and, thus, the risk of gout, but prospective data on the relationship are limited."

The researchers examined the relationship between drinking high-fructose beverages and incidence of gout in a large group of women. The study consisted of data from the Nurses' Health Study, a U.S. prospective cohort study spanning 22 years (1984-2006). The researchers analyzed data from 78,906 women with no history of gout at the beginning of the study and who provided information on intake of beverages and fructose through validated food frequency questionnaires.

The group was followed for 22 year, and the researchers documented 778 newly diagnosed cases of gout. They found that increasing intake of sugar-sweetened soda was associated with increasing risk of gout. Women who consumed one serving per day had a 74 percent increased risk of gout that women who had one serving a month. Women who had 2 or more servings per day had a 2.4 times higher risk. Diet soft drinks weren't associated with gout.

Orange juice intake was also associated with risk of gout. Compared with women who consumed less than a glass (6 oz.) of orange juice per month, women who consumed 1 serving per day had a 41 percent higher risk of gout, and there was a 2.4 times higher risk with 2 or more servings per day. Also, compared with women in the lowest quintile (fifth) of free fructose intake, women in the highest quintile had a 62 percent higher risk of gout.

The researchers say that their findings have practical implications for the prevention of gout in women, and that physicians should be aware of the potential effect of these beverages on the risk of gout. "Our data provide prospective evidence that fructose poses an increased risk of gout among women, thus supporting the importance of reducing fructose intake."

SOURCE: JAMA, published online November 10, 2010