Purine-rich foods, protein intake, and the prevalence of hyperuricemia: The Shanghai Men's Health Study

R. Villegas, Y. B. Xiang, T. Elasy, W. H. Xu, H. Cai, Q. Cai, M. F. Linton, S. Fazio, W. Zheng, X. O. Shu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

116 Scopus citations


Background and aims: Diet may play an important role in the development of hyperuricemia and gout. However, the association between dietary factors and hyperuricemia remains unclear, and few studies have investigated direct links between food intake and hyperuricemia. The aim of this study was to investigate associations between high purine-content foods and protein intake with the prevalence of hyperuricemia by using data from a cross-sectional study of 3978 men aged 40-74 yrs living in Shanghai, China. Methods and Results: Hyperuricemia was defined as blood uric acid level >7.0 mg/dl. One quarter of this population had hyperuricemia. Dietary information was collected by using a food frequency questionnaire. We collected information on anthropometric measurements and lifestyle factors and other potential confounding factors and disease history via interviews. Total protein consumption was not associated with hyperuricemia. We found a positive association between protein from animal sources and prevalence of hyperuricemia and an inverse association between protein from plant sources and hyperuricemia. However, these associations failed to reach significance in mutually adjusted analysis. Seafood intake was associated with higher prevalence of hyperuricemia. The ORs for quintiles of seafood intake (including fish and shellfish) were 1.00, 1.49, 1.35, 1.34, and 1.56 (p for trend: 0.01). An inverse association approaching significance between soy food consumption and hyperuricemia was observed (ORs: 1.00, 0.90, 0.70, 0.89, and 0.77 for quintiles of intake; p for trend: 0.07). No associations between consumption of purine-rich vegetables or meat and prevalence of hyperuricemia were observed. Conclusions: Our data suggest a direct association between seafood consumption and hyperuricemia and an inverse association between consumption of soy food and hyperuricemia among middle-aged, Chinese men.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)409-416
Number of pages8
JournalNutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Diet
  • Hyperuricemia
  • Purine
  • Uric acid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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