Flashback Friday: Treating Gout with Cherry Juice

Flashback Friday: Treating Gout with Cherry Juice

September 14, 2019 39 By Ewald Bahringer


“Treating Gout with Cherry Juice” Over the last 40 years, the burden of gout,
a painful inflammatory arthritis, has risen considerably, now
affecting millions of Americans. Gout is now the most common inflammatory
arthritis in men and older women. In my video “Gout Treatment
with a Cherry on Top” I profiled new research suggesting that even
as little as a half a cup of cherries a day may significantly lower the risk of gout attacks. Fresh cherries aren’t always in season though, so I listed a few alternatives,
and frozen appeared second best, with cherry juice concentrate the runner up. But does concentrated cherry juice
actually help prevent attacks of gout? We didn’t know until now. The first pilot study was a randomized
control trial: cherry juice concentrate versus pomegranate juice
concentrate as a control for the prevention of attacks in gout sufferers
who were having as many as four attacks a month. The cherry group got a tablespoon of cherry juice
concentrate twice a day for four months, and the control group got a tablespoon of pomegranate
juice concentrate twice a day for four months. The number of gout flares in the cherry group
dropped from an average of five down to two, better than the pomegranate group, which
only dropped from about five to four. In about half of those in the cherry group,
who were on prescription anti-inflammatory drugs, were able to stop their medications within
two months after starting the cherry juice, as opposed to none of the patients
in the pomegranate juice group. The second study was a retrospective
investigation over the longer term: 24 gout patients went from having about
seven attacks a year down to two. The researchers conclude cherry juice concentrate
is efficacious for the prevention of gout flares. Certainly large, long-term, randomized control
trials are needed to further evaluate the usefulness of cherries and cherry juice
concentrate for gout flare prophylaxis, but in the meanwhile, are cherries now right
for use as a complementary therapeutic in gout? This commentator is of the opinion
that the current state of evidence remains insufficient to formally recommend
cherry fruit or cherry products as a complementary therapeutic remedy for gout. Why not? Can you guess who this guy is? This commentator is also a paid consultant
of nine different drug companies, all of which manufacture gout medications. I understand how the pharmaceutical
industry can get nervous seeing studies where half of patients were
able to stop taking their gout drugs, given the billions of dollars at stake, but what’s the downside of eating
a half a cup of cherries a day, or if worse comes to worse,
a few spoonful’s of cherry juice?