High Purine Foods | Are They Good or Bad?

high purine foods

High purine foods… Are they good or bad? Human body is capable of manifesting many health anomalies. Our bodies can marvelously manage its metabolic by products and reuse them in various other pathways. Purines are also example of such metabolic by products. In addition, they are also abundantly found in nature. A lot of the foods we eat are packed with purines and pyrimidines. 

“Purines are the nucleotide bases that primarily act as building units of DNA and RNA, as well as many coenzymes in the body.”

Role of Purines in the body:

Purines are majorly responsible for the formation of DNA and RNA. However, they have substantial role in many bodily functions. Some of the main functions of purines in the body are as follows:

  • They act as major source of energy in the form of AMP and GMP.
  • Their role as coenzymes contributes in many essential metabolic pathways and control of cellular proliferation and growth.
  • Optimum conc. of purines in brain during prenatal life and early years of life is essential for healthy and normal brain development and functions

Harms of excessive purines in the body:

Anything taken in excess acts as a cause for abnormality and disease. It is therefore, pertinent to consume a well-balanced purine-based diet.

Some of the diseases caused by irregular purine conc are as follows:

  • Uric acid and urea are the end products of high purine foods metabolized in the body. Excessive conc. of these compounds can impart severe disease conditions such as Gout, Kidney Stones, Renal Failure etc.
  • Genetic deficit of purine bases metabolism causes Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome. The result is excessive uric acid conc in the body causing cognitive abnormality, choreoathetotic movement disorder, delayed physical and mental growth.
  • Megaloblastic anemia
  • Formation of orotic crystals in the urinary tract and urethra. 
  • Gout and arthritic conditions are linked to excessive uric acid as well. 

High purines rich food:

Foods that contain high purine conc. are as follows:

  • Meat particularly red meat such as beef, mutton, pork, veal, turkey etc.
  • Sea foods such as sardines, mussel, codfish, anchovies, trout etc.
  • Beverages containing artificial sweeteners and sugars.
  • Linseed, lentil seeds and lentils in general
  • Dried raisins
  • Spinach
  • Green peas
  • Cauliflower 
  • Grapes
  • Caviar
  • Black gram bean 
  • Yeast containing foods such as bakery goods 

What foods are Low in Purines:

It is never advised to completely omit any food group from the diet, esp. if the condition is not too grave. Doctors and health professionals usually recommend a specified diet chart after thorough examinations and testing. 

Since Purines play many vital roles in body, therefore, complete omittance of this food group can also impose many serious health problems. Fortunately, the nature has been kind enough to supply us with all form of options. Low purine diet is all the rage now a days since it only supplies with the necessary constituents.

Foods containing low yet sufficient purine conc. are as follows:

Trust the power of Fruits:

Although not all fruits are appropriate for low purine diet. However, the options are still massive regarding low purine fruits. The idea is to replenish on necessary vitamins while avoiding over consumption of harmful high purine food bases. Depending on the uric acid produced as a result of metabolic by product, some of these ideal fruits are as follows:

Fruits Total Purines as Uric acid (mg)/ 100g
Red currant17
Pear 12
Pineapple 19
Raspberry 18

Antioxidants are the antipurines you need:

Antioxidants are compounds that fight off toxic free radicals produced by the body in different reactions. Free radicals have the tendency to initiate, speed up, and/or damage many normal reaction processes in the body. Antioxidants remove these damaging free radicals from the body. they also help maintain the normal ambiance of many organ systems.


Pear Pine-Apple

Amazingly enough uric acid produced by the high purine foods metabolism is in fact a very beneficial antioxidant. Optimum concentration of this uric acid prevents oxygen-radical induced blood vessel damage. 
Prep Time 3 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine Juicing
Servings 2
Calories 422 kcal


  • Juicer


  • 1 Pineapple
  • 2 Granny Smith Apples
  • 2 Pear


  • Wash all fruits thoroughly.
  • Remove stems on apple and pears. Cut fruit into large chunks.
  • Start with pineapple first. Run the chop pieces through the juicer.
  • Then add the pears and apples.
  • Stir and enjoy


Unless you have organic apples & pears remove seeds.
You can add a pinch of cayenne pepper for a little pizazz. 


Calories: 422kcalCarbohydrates: 112gProtein: 4gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 8mgPotassium: 894mgFiber: 16gSugar: 81gVitamin A: 405IUVitamin C: 232mgCalcium: 86mgIron: 2mg
Keyword Pear, Pineapple, Purine, Uric Acid
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Beneficial antioxidants inducing purines are found in the following foods:

  • Nuts such as macadamia nuts, almonds, pistachios, cashews
  • Seeds such as flaxseeds
  • Vegetables such as squash, ginger, garlic, potato, zucchini 
  • Fruits such as strawberry, raspberry, pumpkin 

Water is the hidden magic ingredient:

As cliched as it may sound, water is in fact the magic potion. It is not only required for that ever-glowing skin; but also treats many health conditions. This is particularly true for conditions like Lesch-Nyhan syndrome, Gout, and renal blockade. All these conditions are the outcome of excessive uric acid accumulation in the body. 

Water acts as an associate to uricosuric drugs (drugs that remove extra uric acid from the body). Apt. intake of water is essential to wash off and excrete the uric acid residues metabolized by uricosuric acid drugs.

Relish your Radish: 

Radish is one of the most underrated vegetables especially when it comes to treating severe and chronic illnesses. Usually people tend to focus on ‘greens and beans’ and ignore some of the most easily available and rather delicious vegetables such as radish. 

Irrespective of the type of radish eaten, this vegetable is loaded with high water content, extremely low Purine conc. (15mg purines as uric acid/100g) and many essential vitamins and minerals. All these ingredients are required in the case of any high purine induced chronic illness. Radish is already packed with the perfect ratio of every essentially required ingredient in this regard. 

Omegas to the rescue:

Omegas 3,6 and 9 are the compounds that have proven their medical worth time and time again esp. in the case of neurological and mental illnesses. They provide the body with the essential tools to fight off any looming health anomaly. Omegas 3 and 6 are particularly beneficial in this respect. Some of the benefits of omegas are as follows:

  • Neuronal repairment and regrowth
  • Improved cognitive functions and understandings such as in the case of Lesch-Nyhan syndrome
  • Reduce the gout flare up episodes 
  • Strong anti-inflammatory against free radicals that damage blood cells and cause anemia.

Some of the low purine containing omega rich foods are as follows:

  • Walnuts
  • Chia seeds
  • Flaxseeds
  • Lima beans, red beans 

Take away:

The idea behind developing a monitored diet regimen must never be to deprive the body of any particular supplement. In fact, the main goal must always be to develop a routine that is acceptable to the palate taste wise, easy on the pocket, and readily available.

When considering purine induced diseases and health outcomes, we tend to forget that our bodies however need a specific quantity of these bases to manufacture DNA, RNA and GMP etc. Therefore, don’t go out on a limb to eliminate them altogether, instead develop a diet plan based on the quantities required on a daily basis.

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