Trying to prove a link between diet coke and gout either way is difficult. Company scientists say no, whilst other researchers say yes.
And gout sufferers tell conflicting stories as well; some saying they stopped having gout attacks after changing to diet coke from classic coke, others saying that their gout only started after going on to diet coke.
The problem is that there are many underlying reasons for raised uric acid levels leading to the urate crystal formation that causes gout.
Unless you carry out long term studies with a sufficiently large group of people and carefully filter out all the other causes of high uric acid, then the test results cannot be relied on.
What is a fact though is that diet coke contains aspartame, which is a non-calorific sweetener, in general use in soft drinks and food preparations since the 1980’s. And, although it has been passed by various governing bodies worldwide, there is a huge debate going on about potential serious side effects such as epilepsy and brain tumours. Although nothing has been proved scientifically as yet as far as I am aware.
But there is some evidence from a recent study that shows that sweet drinks, such as normal coke, which contain high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as the sweetener DO lead to a higher risk of gout. So, in terms of trying to prevent gout, you may want to seriously consider avoiding normal coke and similar drinks that contain HFCS.
But does this mean that you should stick to / change to diet coke? As I said at the start, there probably isn’t enough evidence to conclude one way or the other whether there is a link between diet coke and gout. Maybe the best option for you as a gout sufferer is to avoid diet coke and similar non-calorific sweetener drinks?
And there are many other issues that are well known to help cause the high uric acid levels in your body that lead to gout. So your time would probably be better spent working on what we DO know rather than what we DON’T know…
For example, we DO know that some of the most important underlying causes of high uric acid are; being overweight, regular and excessive alcohol consumption, high-purine diet, family history of gout / arthritis and hypertension (high blood pressure), some medications, some medical conditions, high levels of fats (lipids) in the bloodstream.
I’ve had recurring gout most of my adult life but haven’t had a gout attack for 10+ years now. Whether this is your first gout attack, or you’ve had multiple flare-ups, the content on here will, hopefully, set you on the road to being gout-free too.