Vitamin C may prevent some types of arthritis

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Vitamin C may prevent some types of arthritis Researchers believe that higher intake of vitamin C may reduce the risk of developing gout, a type of arthritis, in men.

Dr. Hyon K. Choi, currently at Boston University School of Medicine, and colleagues surveyed 46,994 men between 1986 and 2006 from the point of view of vitamin C intake.

Over the 20-year period, they found that men with a daily intake of 500 to 999 milligrams had 17 percent less chance of developing gout compared to those who took less than 250 mg. Those who took more than 1,000 mg reduced their risk by 34 percent.

A daily intake of 1,500 mg was associated with a 45 percent decrease.

It is believed that the mechanism behind vitamin C’s beneficial effect lies in its ability to reduce the level of uric acid in the blood, preventing a buildup of crystal deposits in and around joints which leads to the pain, inflammation and swelling associated with gout.

"The identification of the risk factors for gout that are modifiable with available measures is an important first step in the prevention and management of this common and excruciatingly painful condition," says Dr. Choi.

The report was published in the March 9 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine.
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