Uric acid is a natural substance, but if your body produces too much, it may be bad for your health. Diet plays an important role in helping you manage high uric acid levels, and eliminating certain vegetables from your diet may be necessary. Consult your doctor to discuss your personal diet needs before making changes.
Uric Acid Basics
Uric acid is a substance created in your body by the metabolism of purines, which are found in some of the foods you eat. Normally, uric acid gets dissolved in your blood and is excreted out of your body in urine.
If your body makes too much or can't get rid of it in urine, however, blood uric acid levels rise. Too much uric acid in the blood can cause kidney stones or gout, a painful arthritis characterized by uric acid crystals that settle in the joints.
Vegetables to Limit
Certain vegetables contain high amounts of purines, and limiting your intake of these vegetables is recommended when trying to reduce uric acid levels. High-purine vegetables include mushrooms, asparagus, spinach and cauliflower. Legumes, such as beans, peas and lentils, are also high in purines.
To keep uric acid levels within an acceptable range, eat no more than two servings of the high-purine vegetables, including the legumes, a week, says the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. One serving is equal to 1/2 cup of cooked veggies or 1 cup raw.
All other vegetables, including carrots, cucumbers, green beans, squash and kale, make acceptable choices when trying to reduce uric acid levels in the blood, according to the medical center. Aim for three servings a day.
Upping your intake of vitamin C-rich vegetables may help lower uric acid levels, according to the website Patient. Vegetables high in vitamin C include red and green peppers, broccoli, potatoes, brussels sprouts and tomatoes.
Additional Diet Recommendations
Limiting your intake of other foods may also help keep uric acid levels within an acceptable range. Meats, poultry and seafood are the primary sources of purines in the diet, and it is recommended that you limit your intake of these foods to 3 ounces twice a day. Use caution with broths made from meats, as well. Don't take baker's or brewer's yeast as a supplement, suggests the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
Eating more vitamin-C rich fruit, such as kiwi, strawberries and oranges, may also help bring down your uric acid numbers. Additionally, try to drink plenty of water, about 8 to 12 cups a day, to help prevent kidney stones.