Despite the popularity of Black Bean Broth as a natural remedy for gout, one question is asked frequently: Are black beans bad for gout?
I plan to introduce an FAQ section soon, but in the meantime, here is why I think people worry if black beans are bad for gout.
During the last century, lots of theories developed about purines and gout. Stemming from the biochemical processes in our bodies, scientists determined that uric acid comes from the breakdown of substances called purines.
That research led to a preoccupation with purines and diet, and resulted in many tables and charts about foods high in uric acid. My table, and similar ones from other sources show black beans as being high in purines. However, there are two very important points about purines, and both apply to black beans.
The first point applies to all food. Purines are produced in our own bodies as part of natural cell turnover. Every person is different, but across the board, we produce more purines in our own bodies than we consume in foods. This proportion rises with body mass, so the best way to reduce purine load is to lose weight. Note that weight loss needs to be gradual, around a pound or two a week, or we can overload on uric acid from dying cells. If you need to lose weight quickly, see your doctor about temporary allopurinol or other uric acid lowering treatment during the weeks of high weight loss.
The second point stems from a growing understanding that not all purines are equal, Some are converted to uric acid much easier than others. Vegetable purines have no effect on uric acid, therefore they are not included in Purine Rich Foods For Gout
So I’ll answer my own question and say that black beans are not bad for gout.
The more important question is: are you eating healthily? Bad eating habits such as overeating or too limited a range of foods will make gout worse. Look at your whole diet – not just black beans.