Elevated uric acid in the blood can be harmful to health, so it is advisable to establish a treatment as soon as possible to return to values considered healthy. In this regard, diet plays a key role.
It should be borne in mind that uric acid is a substance generated by the organism itself due to the process of purine decomposition. However, this uricacid can also increase due to the intake of foods rich in purines.
Some of the foods richest in purines are seafood, red meat, sausages, blue fish and some types of vegetables such as cauliflower, asparagus, mushrooms or spinach. Alcoholic beverages, especially beer, also provide a good amount of purines.
Thus, uric acid levels considered healthy under normal conditions should range between 2.4 and 6.0 mg/dL for women; and between 3.4 and 7.0 mg/dL for men. When the values of this acid are above these figures, significant health problems can arise.
How uric acid levels affect the organism
Excess uric acid in the blood is known as hyperuricemia. This phenomenon is the main cause of the appearance of a disease known as gout, characterized by the accumulation of purines in the joints (especially in the foot), which cause great pain and inflammation.
In addition, elevated uric acid in the blood is a cardiovascular risk in itself. In this regard, rheumatologist Mariano Andrés Collado, of the University Hospital of Alicante, explains that gout increases the risk of stroke and diabetes.
«This is due to multiple factors related to the direct effect of high uric acid levels, the inflammation generated by the crystals formed in the joints, or the frequent use of anti-inflammatory drugs (for example, diclofenac) for attacks. Similar mechanisms would also explain renal comorbidity,» the specialist comments.
All in all, medicine differentiates between two types of hyperuricemia. On the one hand, we find primary hyperuricemia, which is mainly caused by high levels of purines, while secondary hyperuricemia is generated by another type of pathology.
Normally, the organism has the capacity to eliminate 90% of the amount of uric acid generated during the day. When this balance is broken for a prolonged period of time, the levels of this substance increase considerably.
Other effects of hyperuricemia
During a period of hyperuricemia, different symptoms may appear, although usually there are no symptoms at all. Actually, elevated uric acid shows its face through the development of gout or other health conditions.
In this regard, the only way to know the exact uric acid levels is by performing a blood test that provides specific and accurate values.
In addition to causing gout, hyperuricemia can cause different kidney problems in the organism, as well as pose a cardiovascular risk in itself.
Finally, in people undergoing chemotherapy, gouty arthritis or kidney problems may arise. Similarly, in the presence of various types of cancer, excess uric acid can be reflected by fatigue, fever or chills.