Can you eat chicken if you have gout?

In this short article, we will provide an answer to the question, “Can you eat chicken if you have gout?” with an in-depth analysis of gout, the risks of eating chicken in gout, the nutritional value of chicken, best cuts of chicken, some gout friendly cooking tips and foods to avoid if you have gout.

Can you eat chicken if you have gout?

Yes, you can eat chicken if you have gout, however, it all depends on the cut and the purine content of the chicken. You will have to follow certain preparation methods and limit the amount of chicken you eat. 

Chicken is protein-rich meat with high nutritional value but people with gout need to be careful while eating chicken. It is a source of purines, like all other sorts of poultry, meat, fish and shellfish. 

Purines are converted into uric acid in the body. If you eat purine-rich foods in excessive quantities, a high amount of uric acid can accumulate in your joints leading to an increase in the occurrence and severity of your gout symptoms.

Chicken and gout

Gout is a kind of painful arthritis that occurs due to an excessive accumulation of uric acid in the body. It can affect one or more joints but commonly occurs in the feet. 

A person with gout needs to consume chicken in moderate amounts. This is because chicken has a significant amount of purines, which are chemical substances found in every cell of our body and are present in a lot of foods. 

A moderate amount of purine consumption can protect blood vessels, but a higher amount can cause increased symptoms of gout. 

It has been found out that excessive amounts of purine consumption causes increased uric acid levels (hyperuricemia) and result in the formation of uric acid crystals in the joints (typically in the big toe), which can be very painful and even disabling.

The nutritional profile of chicken

A 3 ounce serving of chicken provides:

  • Calories: 128
  • Fibre: 0 g
  • Fat: 2.7 g
  • Sodium: 44 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 0 g
  • Sugars: 0 g
  • Protein: 26 g

Best cuts of chicken

People who suffer from gout should maintain their total fat consumption to 30 per cent or less of their total daily calories. A diet having high-fat content may worsen your symptoms as fat can stop your kidneys from properly excreting uric acid. 

For the meatiest cuts of chicken, take skinless breasts or extra-lean ground white meat. Select less dark meat, i.e., thighs and drumsticks, which comprise more fat per serving. If your sodium consumption is also a concern, buy chicken whose flavour has not been improved with a high-sodium saline solution.

Some gout-friendly cooking tips

If you are suffering from gout, the following tips can help you out:

  • Avoid frying chicken to keep your fat consumption minimum. 
  • Do not serve the cooked chicken with high-fat cream sauces or heavy gravies. 
  • The broth and meat extracts often used to make gravy for chicken dishes are high-purine foods that should be avoided. 
  • Grill, roast, stir-fry or cook chicken using small amounts to add flavour to your meal.
  • Eat the chicken with carbohydrate-rich foods as carbohydrates help in excreting uric acid.

Risks of eating chicken with gout

Gout patients can have up to 6 ounces of protein-rich, high-purine foods including chicken per day. Restrict yourself to 2 to 3-ounce servings at a given meal. Drink 8 ounces of water before and after having meals comprising chicken, particularly if you are diagnosed with gout or have a record of kidney stones. 

A good amount of fluid intake washes uric acid out of the blood, which helps to prevent the buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints. If your gout symptoms have recently worsened, eliminate chicken from your diet until the problem resolves.

Foods to avoid if you have gout

If you are suffering from gout, you should avoid the consumption of the following foods:

  • Organ Meats: For instance, heart, liver, brain, kidney, tongue, sweetbreads and tripe.
  • Fish/Seafood: For instance, sardines, lobster, anchovies, caviar, herring, sprats, scallops, mackerel, whitebait, trout,  fish roe, crayfish 
  • Game: Including quail, pheasant, rabbit, venison
  • Mincemeat
  • Goose
  • Meat-based liquids such as broth, gravies, consumes, bouillon

Foods that should be consumed in moderation include:

  • Chicken
  • Oysters, mussels, prawns, shrimp, scampi and most other shellfish, 
  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Turkey
  • Lamb
  • Duck

Conclusion

In this short article, we have provided an answer to the question, “Can you eat chicken if you have gout?” with an in-depth analysis of gout, the risks of eating chicken in gout, the nutritional value of chicken, best cuts of chicken, some gout friendly cooking tips and foods to avoid if you have gout. 

References 

https://www.verywellhealth.com/chicken-and-gout-5092840
https://www.livestrong.com/article/443122-chicken-for-gout-sufferers/
https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/gout-diet/art-20048524

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.