It's 2013. By now, we all know that drinks with high sugar content (like sodas, slurpees and some of those delicious Starbucks frappucinos) aren’t great for your waistline. As if that weren't reason enough to avoid these types of beverages, a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Otago and Auckland have discovered that they can cause other health problems, too.
According to the new research, sugary drinks can light up a certain gene that raises your risk of getting gout, a painful form of arthritis. Gout is caused by a buildup of uric acid in the blood; it makes your joints feel hot, stiff, red and swollen, and can be felt especially painfully in your great toe joint.
The gene under review by the scientists for the study was SLC2A9; its normal job in the body is to help uric acid leave the blood through your kidneys. Not everyone has this gene variation, and when those who have it drink too many sugary drinks, the gene apparently does a 360 in function and causes uric acid to build up in the blood instead, making you more likely to develop gout.
If you have a gout attack, there are ways your Houston podiatrist can help minimize the pain of this condition, so if you suspect that you are having an attack, make an appointment with Dr. Andrew Schneider as soon as possible. And in the meantime, if you want to stave off the pain of gout, avoid sodas, liver and other dietary supplements that can increase your risk of an attack.