High uric acid diet for PD?: My husband had... - Cure Parkinson's

Cure Parkinson's

19,742 members20,793 posts

High uric acid diet for PD?

My husband had his uric acid tested recently and it was out of range low, lower than even the medians for PD patients in most of the uric acid studies on Pubmed. He has been eating a diet to raise his uric acid levels and testing his uric acid at home with test strips I bought on Amazon. He feels it has been helping quite a bit.

Here is a good study on Pubmed that relates to what he found has helped him - "In this large longitudinal investigation carried out among US men, we found that a diet expected to increase plasma urate level was associated with a reduced risk of PD. This result, together with previous findings that uricemia not only is a strong negative risk factor for PD (4) but also predicts slower clinical progression of PD (6, 7), supports a possible neuroprotective effect of urate or its precursors in PD pathogenesis and suggests that dietary modulation of plasma urate may play a role in the prevention and treatment of PD. academic.oup.com/aje/articl...

He is also doing other things, like he tested low in vitamin D and B12 so he is working on getting those in range, getting more sun, more exercise, Qi Gong and a bunch more, but he seems to get the biggest improvement in symptoms from higher purine meals. (Also nightshade vegetables, which are also linked to being helpful for PD).

We had a pretty good idea of what may have contributed to his PD because we had changed our diets right before all this happened. We were eating less meat and seafood to lower our cancer risk, after researching cancer diets for a pet and family member.

The nutritionfacts.org site says the sweet spot for uric acid levels is between 5 and 7. Higher levels are linked to disorders like heart attacks, prostate cancer and gout, lower levels to conditions like MS and PD - nutritionfacts.org/video/pa...

29 Replies

A diet expected to increase urate levels will have many additional effects and does not prove high urate levels improve Parkinson's. An interventional study is needed for that and one has been done.

The above post also cites observational studies that found associations between high uric acid levels and improved Parkinson's. Another way to view this is that these studies found low uric acid levels were associated with worsened Parkinson's. The reason for this is low uric acid levels are indicative of additional disease, not that there is anything good about high uric acid. I set forth the details of the association of low uric acid levels with additional illness here, as well as a detailed refutation of the nutrition "facts" video. Uric acid levels over 6 mg/dL are regarded as excessive by responsible medical authorities :

Association ≠ Causation. Do Not Be Led Astray By This Popular Health Guru

tinyurl.com/ycsr4cfu

Based on the mistaken idea that high uric acid levels are good for Parkinson's, a gold standard double-blind randomized controlled phase 3 study that raised uric acid levels was undertaken. This study was halted early for futility. It made Parkinson's patients worse - the patients with elevated uric acid progressed more quickly than those on placebo. This result trumps the various observational studies cited in the above post.

The other problem with high uric acid is it has been proven to cause kidney disease, and gout, and is strongly associated with stroke and heart attack. See my writing at the above link for details.

More links:

Urate trial futility announcement:

ninds.nih.gov/Disorders/Cli...

Link to failed study result:

pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/345...

in reply to park_bear

That study didn't involve whole foods, overall diet changes. It was long-term treatment with inosine in people with PD.

This is working for my husband, and it is based on pretty solid, science backed research. He is correcting all his nutritional deficiencies and out of range biomarkers, and his uric acid was out of range low, compared to healthy controls. Have you had your uric acid levels tested? Are they between 5 and 7? Are your PD symptoms going away?

Uric acid levels under 7 are not associated with gout or kidney disease. That is why Dr. Gregor calls 5 - 7 the sweet spot.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

The way science works is we change one variable at a time and see what the result is.

"a diet expected to increase plasma urate level was associated with a reduced risk of PD" - Such a diet will do many other things besides increasing urate levels.

in reply to park_bear

Perhaps science hasn't found a cure for PD because one small change isn't enough to make a difference. Maybe it is more a total lifestyle problem like heart disease. We're going for 1% improvement from each of 100 factors, and there are many more that 100 factors in Pubmed studies that have resulted in improvements for PD patients. We're doing something similar to the Breseden Protocal for Alzheimer's approach which looks at 36 "holes in the roof" that need to be repaired and has published studies documenting improvements.

in reply to park_bear

If you look at the studies on gout, there are many conflicting studies on which foods help or hurt gout patients. A single study is hardly definitive. The study you like to mention looked at a supplement, not even a whole food, let alone a diet revamp.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

A large interventional randomized placebo-controlled study is definitive.

You can believe whatever you like.

MarionP profile image
MarionP in reply to

It may be "working" for him, as he "feels," (interesting word to use) or at least you think so, but not in the way that you think, or entirely coincidentally or even just in your imagination, which means others should not go playing Russian Roulette on taking your explanation too simply, uncritically, too literally nor too generally in applying to other cases including their own.

For example: you think apples are good for you so you may just grind up an apple every day and drink the juice...but apple seeds contain cyanide, and too much of that will kill you dead faster than falling off a 40 story building will, and there is no cure.

You know as I read more of your exchanges, I wonder why you put a question mark at the end of your entry title rather than a period. You seem much more definitive than a question mark would suggest. Maybe I shall call you Icarus.

in reply to MarionP

If you go to Pubmed there are probably hundreds of studies on individual factors that have been shown to help people or animal models with PD, from acupressure to Qi Gong to higher uric acid levels. Do you think the researcher's imagined those improved results, too? If not, then why would it be surprising that many of those same factors would also help someone making similar changes, only as not part of an official study?

MarionP profile image
MarionP in reply to

Good luck at your desperation casino.

in reply to MarionP

I don't understand why you feel the need to be sarcastic. He is trying the same things we found in the science backed studies. That is the opposite of a casino where the odds are against you. Using what worked in science backed studies increases your odds of success rather than trying random interventions.

LindaP50 profile image
LindaP50 in reply to park_bear

Park_Bear - totally agree with your findings.

My husband was taking water pills to reduce swelling in ankles and to help heal a wound on ankle. Side affect was increased his uric acid levels. Dr. said no more water pills even though helped reduce swelling not worth the other side affects.

Dr. wanted his uric level to be at 5 or 6. Not higher. Stated especially with Parkinson's Disease and didn't want to cause kidney disease or gout.

in reply to LindaP50

But that is exactly the point of my post, not the opposite of it. The nutritionfacts video says the sweet spot is 5 - 7. If you want to go with 5 -6 that is the same range. My husband tested at 3.5 and has been getting better by moving that up into the optimal range. What downside is there to being tested and being in the optimal range, if you aren't already there? Studies show most people with PD are too low in UA.

My husband is testing literally every vitamin and mineral, plus we're doing gut tests and other bloodwork done. He is only changing his diet or taking supplements in the areas he is out of optimal range. What possible downside is there to that approach?

He was low in B12, vitamin D and uric acid and correcting those has helped . There are all published studies on Pubmed linking these deficiencies to PD and in most cases higher levels being protective. You can go to the Pubmed datatbase yourself and look these all up.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

The "sweet spot" is an invitation to stroke, heart attack, and kidney disease. 6 mg/dL Is a level that requires action. That does not make 5 mg/dL "good".

There is no advantage to these excessive levels of uric acid. None whatsoever. This idea is a statistical artifact – an association – resulting from illness inducing low uric acid plus causing other ill effects. That gives the false impression that low uric acid is bad.

If someone suffers stroke, heart attack or kidney diseases as a result of following this terrible advice there is the potential for liability. How you feel if your husband suffers this fate as result of your ill considered idea?

in reply to park_bear

Both high and low uric acid levels are tied to higher mortality - rheumatologyadvisor.com/hom...

“In this large cohort study of men and women, both low and high uric acid levels were predictive of increased mortality, supporting a U-shaped association between serum uric acid levels and adverse health outcomes,” the authors write."

A uric acid level of 5 is considered within the optimal range and is not associated with gout. If you have any actual medical studies showing a 5 level is associated with gout, please post them. Here is what I have read - medicalnewstoday.com/articl...

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

Reading comprehension:

This idea is a statistical artifact – an association – resulting from illness inducing low uric acid plus causing other ill effects. I covered this matter in detail here. Apparently you have still not read it.

Association ≠ Causation. Do Not Be Led Astray By This Popular Health Guru

tinyurl.com/ycsr4cfu

The failure of the large interventional randomized placebo-controlled study was definitive.

Your persistent deliberate ignorance is putting your husband at risk.

in reply to park_bear

If you have any science based studies showing PD is not low in patients with PD, is not neuroprotective at optimal levels or that a level 5 is is associated with gout, I would be interested in seeing those links.

PD is linked to changes in the brain that start with the gut microbiome. That has pretty well been proven now. A single supplement may not have the same impact as overall diet changes do on gut bacteria. If a single supplement was the answer to changing UA related conditions, then there would be no need for gout diets. Yet, there are many gout diets and people with gout have to watch what they eat.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

Here you go. For men, the incidence of gout with uric acid levels between 5 - 5.9 is more than triple those with uric acid levels <5.

onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi...

Incidence of gout versus uric acid levels
in reply to park_bear

That article is over 20 years old. Current guidelines are under 6 for gout patients. Check out the articles on UA being protective for PD. There are over 200 if you go to Pubmed and type in "parkinson's uric acid".

This chart shows median UA levels in PD patients compared to healthy controls pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/283....

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

I supplied exactly what you asked for and now you are grasping at straws for an excuse to try to get out of it. This was an excellent study using the Framingham database of a very large population over a long period of time.

Indeed the 6 mg/dl level is the regarded as the action level. As the study shows the 5-6 level is not okay. There is no advantage to high uric acid levels. If you want to put your husband at risk for gout, that is your problem, and his. Hopefully at this point no one else reading these comments will do likewise.

As I have said repeatedly, the large interventional randomized placebo-controlled study was definitive. There is no excuse for your persistent deliberate ignorance in this matter.

in reply to park_bear

I asked three questions - if you have any science based studies showing PD is not low in patients with PD, is not neuroprotective at optimal levels or that a level 5 is associated with gout. You supplied one out of date gout article that didn't contradict gout not being linked to a UA level of 5.

The healthy controls in the UA PD studies generally had median UA levels around 5, but still higher than the PD patients, not enough to hit the gout range but higher than the median PD range.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

Your comment a case study in projection. What is out of date are all the associational studies you keep citing that have been refuted by failed the interventional trial.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

Those UA levels are an association. Causation has been refuted.

If you are certain that one's uric acid level is related in actual mechanism to causation (which is a very big leap of assuming), and not instead for instance as just a by-product or wholly unrelated coincidence, and you are knowingly mindful of imposing gout and kidney disease from uremia, which IS caused by excess uric acid.

Uric acid is just a natural breakdown product of ubiquitous protein that makes you up (nitrogen) being recycled...which, being a basic necessary cell/tissue building block plus a part of a whole lot of other necessary things, you always have plenty of and must be able to process building up and tearing down, and which the chemical notation suffix "-ine" label stands for (murine, nitrogen, the component element that makes protein protein) refers to in the substance's chemical name. If you can't finish processing and removing the normal breakdown of proteins, which are natural metabolic waste products, your blood becomes clogged with excess protein byproducts and nitrogen, like too much garbage that can't be removed, and that resulting buildup is the toxic disease result that is called gout.

in reply to MarionP

I can tell from your responses you aren't actually looking at the Pubmed studies on uric acid and PD, even the ones I listed, or the nutritionfacts video / article on uric acid sweet spot for PD (and other diseases). Sweet spot means lower than the levels associated with gout and kidney disease and higher than the levels associated with MS and PD. The 5 - 7 range is linked to lower mortality from all causes.

It is a cheap test to have uric acid levels tested. Having uric acid levels in an optimal range is one of those can't hurt, might help kind of factors that has a solid science base.

Here is another Pubmed study - In conclusion, uric acid demonstrates neuroprotective properties for dopaminergic neurons in PD mice through modulation of neuroinflammation and oxidative stress. - pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/289...

MarionP profile image
MarionP in reply to

I can tell from your responses that you are desperate and all out of proportion and bending over 5 ways to Sunday to insert argumentative misnomers. You'd make a great defense attorney, but as a scientist you would end up injecting bleach into your client to treat his Covid.

in reply to MarionP

I'm the one linking to the current PD research studies and not focused on personal insults. If you have links showing anything I've posted is incorrect, please post them for discussion.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

None of them are current. All the associational studies you keep citing are out of date - they have been refuted by the failed interventional trial

in reply to park_bear

That is not what the trial author has stated - The study you mentioned only looked at inosine. From the study author: No matter the results of SURE-PD3, urate remains a clue in Parkinson's. Laboratory and population studies show that urate is linked to Parkinson's. The results from SURE-PD3 may still help us learn more about the role of urate in Parkinson's and new ways to target the disease. And if inosine isn't the way to slow disease progression, that's beneficial too. It helps us close one door so we can now walk through another, and each door we try gets us closer to our goal. -michaeljfox.org/news/parkin...

Researchers are not ending their uric acid studies because of the results of the inosine trial. They aren't even ending their inosine hopes yet. They still haven't analyzed all the data and have left the door open to more studies on inosine if they find some aspects or subgroups of PD patients it may benefit.

From the same study author - "Parkinson's disease occurs and progresses because the cells in the brain that make dopamine and are essential for voluntary movements are damaged and lost. In laboratory studies, urate protects these brain cells. In epidemiological, or population, studies, researchers have found an association between higher levels of urate and a lower risk of Parkinson's as well as slower disease progression in people with Parkinson's.

park_bear profile image
park_bear in reply to

Try reading these things that you quoted more carefully:

"urate remains a clue in Parkinson's. Laboratory and population studies show that urate is linked to Parkinson's"

Note that they do not state causation.

"In laboratory studies, urate protects these brain cells" All kinds of things help in laboratory studies that prove to be ineffective or dangerous in the clinic.

"In epidemiological, or population, studies, researchers have found an association between higher levels of urate and a lower risk of Parkinson's as well as slower disease progression in people with Parkinson's." Right.

It is great these researchers want to get down to the bottom of what is causing this association. It is a safe bet they are not going to repeat the failed experiment - they would not be permitted to do so even if they wanted to.

You may also like...