Quercetin has the ability to limit uric acid production, but rarely recognized as a natural treatment for gout. This unique compound is not hard to find. It is present in several plant-based foods and available in supplement form. This post reveals the benefits of quercetin for gout and how to incorporate it into your diet.
1. What is Quercetin?
Quercetin is a plant pigment that belongs to a class of healthful compounds known as flavonoids. It has shown to promote anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and immune-boosting effects. This incredible flavonoid works by scavenging harmful free radicals and regulate enzymes that contribute to the development of chronic diseases. Quercetin is found in certain fruits, vegetables, grains, and herbs.
2. Quercetin Helps Lower Uric Acid and Control Gout Symptoms
Since the 1950s, several studies have purported quercetin’s ability to reduce uric acid levels. Quercetin has been found to inhibit xanthine oxidase, an enzyme involved in uric acid production.
In one clinical study, participants who took a quercetin supplement had a considerable decrease in uric acid levels after four weeks. The daily dose was a 500mg tablet.
Another study found quercetin increases uric acid excretion and improves kidney function. Specifically, the transporters responsible for removing urate from the body were accelerated, whereas those responsible for reabsorbing urate were suppressed. Thus, researchers concluded quercetin supplementation may be beneficial for gout treatment.
In addition to regulating the development of uric acid, quercetin can also help reduce swelling from a gout flare. This is due to its ability to neutralize free radicals in the body, which contribute to inflammation and oxidative stress.
Read this to know the right fruits to eat for gout: Top 24 Fruits For The Kidneys And Gout
3. Other Health Benefits of Quercetin
Beyond its association with gout symptoms and uric acid metabolism, quercetin has been found to have several other health benefits that support overall wellness.
Clinical studies on the anti-cancer effects of quercetin are limited. However, some have reported promising results in reducing the risk of certain types of cancer, including prostate, ovarian, and lung cancer. Scientists suggest it might help by stopping cancers cells from dividing, and preventing the growth of blood vessels that promote tumors.
By reducing blood pressure, lowering cholesterol levels, and improving blood vessel function, quercetin may improve cardiovascular health. Studies have also indicated that quercetin may protect against atherosclerosis by reducing the accumulation of plaque in the arteries.
Quercetin can help with congestion by reducing inflammation and swelling in the nasal passages. Its antioxidant abilities act as a natural antihistamine, which can decrease the amount of mucus production.
Boost Immune System
The immune system gets a boost from quercetin by fighting off harmful pathogens that can make us sick. Its anti-inflammatory properties helps the immune system to do its job. Additionally, this potent flavonoid can stimulate the production of antibodies, which help to recognize and fight off infections.
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4. Foods With Quercetin For Gout Treatment
Quercetin-rich foods have demonstrated to reduce inflammation and lower uric acid levels, making them a smart addition to a gout-friendly diet.
Best Quercetin-rich Fruits For Gout
Citrus fruits are not only high in quercetin, but may also contain other gout-fighting nutrients such as vitamin C, anthocyanins, dietary fiber, and other bio-active flavonoids. Here are some of the best quercetin-rich fruits for gout:
Note, several factors can affect the amount of quercetin found in fruits, including plant genetics, climate, soil quality, harvesting, storage conditions, and processing techniques.
Best Quercetin-rich Vegetables For Gout
Certain vegetables with quercetin also may contain other healthful compounds, such as vitamins (C, K, and E), dietary fiber, potassium, calcium, iron, and other antioxidants like carotenoids and flavonoids. Here are some the best quercetin-rich vegetables for gout:
- red Leaf Lettuce
- bell peppers
- red cabbage
- brussels sprouts
- green beans
Note that quercetin concentrations in vegetables can vary depending on factors such as the specific variety, cultivation method, storage, and maturity of the vegetable.
Best Herbs With Quercetin For Gout
Herbs with quercetin are usually loaded with other beneficial compounds. Many have anti-inflammatory abilities, which can help reduce the pain and swelling associated with gout. Also, certain herbal teas have shown to slow down the development of uric acid. Here are the best herbs with quercetin for gout:
- St. John’s wort
- red clover
- nettle leaf
- ginkgo biloba
- green tea
- American elderberry
- milk thistle
- nettle leaf
5. Quercetin Supplementation For Gout
Eating healthy whole fruits and vegetables with quercetin is great, but taking quercetin supplements has some benefits over just relying on food sources alone.
Reasons For Quercetin Supplements
The amount of quercetin present in foods can differ significantly due to several factors. On the other hand, supplements provide a consistent dose and easy tracking according to your needs.
Another reason is that quercetin supplements can be quickly absorbed by the body, whereas other compounds in food can interfere with absorption.
Lastly, consuming high amounts of foods with quercetin may not be practical for some individuals. For example, a person with a busy lifestyle may not have the time or access to regularly consume large amounts of fruits and vegetables.
The exact amount of quercetin in blueberries can vary, but on average, blueberries contain about 5-8 milligrams of quercetin per 100 grams of fresh fruit. This means that you would need to eat around 12-20 cups (or 1.5-2.5 pounds) of blueberries to obtain 1000mg of quercetin.
What is Recommended daily dosage of quercetin?
The recommended daily dosage of quercetin varies depending on the individual’s age, sex, and health. However, the typical range is between 500mg to1000mg per day. It’s important to note that quercetin supplements should be taken with meals to maximize their absorption and efficacy.
While quercetin is generally safe and well-tolerated, taking too much can lead to minor side effects like stomach ache, headache, and tingling at extremities. As with any supplement, it is important to consult with your doctor before starting quercetin for gout treatment.
6. Quercetin with Bromelain For Gout
Quercetin combined with bromelain has garnered attention in recent years due to their combined health benefits. Bromelain is an enzyme derived from pineapple that is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It has also shown to support the immune system and to promote healthy circulation, which can help reduce inflammation and swollen joints.
Quercetin and bromelain complement each other’s therapeutic effects. Studies on this dynamic duo continue to reveal promising results, particularly in reducing uric acid levels and easing symptoms of gout. Thus, eating some pineapple plus quercetin-rich foods would be a wise choice for gout sufferers.
How to Enhance Quercetin Absorption and Effectiveness
Quercetin is poorly absorbed by the body due to its low solubility in water. Luckily, bromelain and vitamin C can improve absorption, as a result, increase its effectiveness. That’s why you can usually find quercetin supplements formulated with either of the two additives.
The natural way to enhance quercetin absorption is by consuming fruits with bromelain and vitamin C. Supplements are also available for each one. However, the more effective way is by taking a quercetin phytosome supplement.
Quercetin phytosome is made to attach to special fats called phospholipids, which help our bodies absorb quercetin better. Studies have shown that quercetin phytosome can increase absorption by up to 20 times compared to standard quercetin supplements.
Check out top brand supplements of Quercetin w/Bromelain & Quercetin phytosome w/Vitamin C
Quercetin can regulate xanthine oxidase, although not as powerfully as allopurinol. Many natural remedies for gout treatment get ignored because they are not a quick fix like popping colchicine pills.
Like with any diet improvement, quercetin for gout treatment pays off in the long run. I understand how difficult it is to break bad eating habits, let alone eat fruits that I generally avoided. However, it is achievable starting with small but consistent changes. One simple way is adding berries to your cereal.
Now, I regularly shop for berries, pineapples, kiwis, asparagus and other foods listed. You don’t have to love all the fruits. Just the ones you can tolerate. As I’ve admitted in previous posts, I’m not really into the flavor of cherries. However, I will chug a quart of dark cherry juice when necessary!
There are effective supplements of quercetin phytosome and quercetin with bromelain, which make it even easier to incorporate to a gout-friendly diet and lifestyle. Whether from food or supplements, quercetin is a fundamental element in becoming GOUTPROOF!
- A review on benefits of quercetin in hyperuricemia and gouty arthritis – 2022 PubMed
- The inhibition of xanthine oxidase by flavonoids and related compounds – 1951 PubMed
- Quercetin lowers plasma uric acid in pre-hyperuricaemic males: a randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, cross-over trial – 2016 PubMed
- Mechanistic insights into the inhibition of quercetin on xanthine oxidase – 2018 ScienceDirect
- Quercetin regulates organic ion transporter and uromodulin expression and improves renal function in hyperuricemic mice – 2012 PubMed
- Therapeutic potential of quercetin as a cardiovascular agent – 2018 PubMed
- Quercetin, Inflammation and Immunity – 2016 PubMed
- Utilization of quercetin and quercetin glycosides from onion (Allium cepa L.) solid waste as an antioxidant, urease and xanthine oxidase inhibitors 2017 PubMed
- Xanthine Oxidase Inhibitors from Filipendula ulmaria (L.) Maxim. and Their Efficient Detections by HPTLC and HPLC Analyses 2021 PubMed
- Athletic Performance is helped by Quercetin with bromelain – Pacific Center for Naturopathic Medicine
- Nanotechnology Innovations to Enhance the Therapeutic Efficacy of Quercetin – 2021 PubMed
- An Integrated Plan for Lowering Uric Acid – 2021 www.drperlmutter.com
- Evaluation of the Effects of a Supplement Composed by Quercetin, Rutin, Bromelain and L-Carnosine in Patients with Borderline Uricemia 2020 Science and Education Publishing Co.
- Promising Effects of 3-Month Period of Quercetin Phytosome® Supplementation in the Prevention of Symptomatic COVID-19 Disease in Healthcare Workers: A Pilot Study – 2021 gout blog Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
- Improved Oral Absorption of Quercetin from Quercetin Phytosome®, a New Delivery System Based on Food Grade Lecithin – 2018 PubMed