Foods that are high in uric acid can increase a person's risk of getting gout, says WebMD. Gout is a form of arthritis that causes sudden attacks of pain, swelling and stiffness in joints. These severe attacks often occur in the joints of the big toe.
Foods that are high in uric acid include meats, seafood and gravy. Beer and drinks sweetened with fruit sugars also promote uric acid production and increase the risk of gout, though dairy products may decrease that risk, says WebMD. Foods that are low in uric acid include green vegetables, tomatoes, fruit, nonwhole-grain breads and cereals, and chocolate. Coffee, tea and carbonated beverages are also low in uric acid production.
Aside from diet, other factors contribute to high levels of uric acid in the body such as obesity, family history, medications, certain medical conditions, as well as age and sex, says Mayo Clinic. Recent trauma or surgery can also trigger episodes of gout. Men are more likely to experience gout at a younger age than women.
If an episode of gout is experienced, changing one's diet, increasing exercise and decreasing alcohol intake, especially beer, can help decrease the risk of further episodes, according to WebMD.