Vitamin C nutritional supplements may help prevent gout

Vitamin C linked to a reduced chance of goutMen who take nutritional supplements of vitamin C seem to be less likely to suffer from gout, new research suggests.

A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine shows that male participants who took the highest levels of the vitamin were 45 percent less likely to develop the painful arthritis condition, compared with those who did not take supplements.

Dr. Hyon K. Choi and colleagues studied how vitamin C affected more than 46,000 men over a period of 10 years.

They discovered that for each additional 500 milligrams of the vitamin consumed by the men, their risk of gout diminished by approximately 17 percent.

The vitamin seems to function by decreasing the levels of uric acid found in the blood, according to the researchers.

“Vitamin C intake may provide a useful option in the prevention of gout,” the authors write, describing the arthritis condition as “excruciatingly painful” to sufferers.

Approximately three million people had gout in 2005, according to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.