Eggs and Gout: Benefits, Meal Ideas, and Shopping Tips

Eggs are a good protein source for individuals with gout because they're naturally low in purines, which are chemical compounds found in foods and in your body. People with gout are often advised to avoid high-protein foods that are also high in purines, such as organ meat, red meat, and some types of seafood.

This article will discuss the benefits of choosing eggs as a protein source for people with gout. It will also discuss different egg preparations and how to choose the best eggs.

Person picking an egg out of a carton

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Benefits of Eggs for Gout

When purines are broken down, uric acid is produced. In gout, excess uric acid builds up in the body (hyperuricemia), forming crystals in the joints and causing this painful form of arthritis.

A healthy, balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-rich whole foods from all food groups is beneficial for gout. Foods high in purines and heavily processed foods should be limited.

The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet is also frequently recommended because it includes low-purine foods, which may prevent gout flare-ups.

Although people with gout should generally avoid or limit animal proteins with a high purine content, including shellfish, organ meat, turkey, bacon, and red meat, they can still enjoy moderate amounts of protein with a low purine content.

A 2019 review examined the purine content in various beverages, supplements, and foods. Researchers found that beer and animal-based products (other than eggs and dairy) had the highest amount of purines, while egg products, dairy, fruits, and sweets had the lowest amount.

Furthermore, a 2015 research review examined how different protein sources affected flare-ups in individuals with gout. Researchers found no statistically significant association between eggs, dairy products, nuts, seeds, or grains and the risk of gout.

If You Have an Egg Allergy

If you have an egg allergy, avoid eggs and foods that contain eggs to prevent a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction. If you are allergic to chicken eggs, your healthcare provider may recommend also avoiding eggs from other animals, including geese, turkeys, quails, and ducks.

Egg Intolerance

If you experience digestive discomfort, such as nausea, bloating, or abdominal pain after eating eggs, you may have an egg intolerance. If egg intolerance is suspected, it's important to speak with a healthcare provider. They can recommend proper testing or an elimination diet to determine if eggs are causing your symptoms.

Gout-Friendly Foods to Pair With Eggs

Managing the amount of purines you consume is key to preventing future gout attacks. Low-purine foods that pair well with eggs include:

  • Low-fat dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt)
  • Cherries
  • Fruit and fruit juice
  • Potatoes
  • Vegetables
  • Bread
  • Healthy fats and oils (olive oil, avocado)
  • Nuts

Nutritional Value of Different Egg Preparations

Eggs are a complete protein, meaning they contain all nine essential amino acids that the human body requires. They also contain fats, vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial nutrients.

Boiled eggs are often considered to be healthier than other egg preparations because they are cooked without oil and butter.

One large boiled egg contains:

  • Calories: 78
  • Protein: 6.3 grams
  • Fat: 5.3 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 0.5 grams
  • Selenium: 28% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Riboflavin: 20% of the DV
  • Choline: 27% of the DV

The way you cook and eat an egg can also impact its nutritional value. For example, an egg white is higher in protein and vitamin B3 but lower in calories, cholesterol, vitamins, and minerals compared to the yolk. One egg white contains around 3.6 grams of protein, 0 grams of fat, and 18 calories.

The yolk, on the other hand, is higher in fat and calories. It also is higher in vitamins, containing all vitamins except vitamin C. One egg yolk provides around 2.8 grams of protein, 4.9 grams of fat, and 56 calories.

A hard-boiled egg has a slightly higher protein content and contains 13 fewer calories than a scrambled egg, according to the Department of Agriculture (USDA) Nutrient Database. Overall, the nutrient compositions are still very similar between the two.

How Many Eggs Should You Eat With Gout?

There's no official recommendation on the number of eggs a person with gout should eat. However, eggs have been controversial because of their cholesterol content. According to one 2021 observational study, whole eggs may increase a person's risk for heart disease and mortality.

On average, one large boiled egg contains around 186 milligrams of cholesterol. Previously, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommended limiting total dietary cholesterol to less than 300 milligrams per day. While the 2015–2020 guidelines still advise eating as little cholesterol as possible, they have removed the limit.

It's important to note that research remains mixed. Most experts recommend consuming eggs in moderation as part of a healthy eating pattern. One 2018 study found that up to 12 eggs per week is safe and won't negatively impact your health.

Additionally, the American Heart Association recommends one egg or two egg whites per day as part of a healthy eating pattern.

Based on current studies, it appears that most healthy adults can safely eat one to two eggs per day. If you have heart disease, high cholesterol, or other health issues, consider talking to a healthcare provider or dietitian about how many eggs are right for you.

How to Find the Best Eggs

You've likely come across several terms on egg cartons that have left you feeling confused. Some labels indicate the eggs are "cage-free," while others are labeled "Certified Organic" or "free range."

The following definitions will help you find the best eggs and understand the terms on their cartons:

  • Free-range eggs come from hens that are allowed to roam freely outside and engage in natural behaviors.
  • Cage-free eggs come from hens that live in chicken houses. Instead of living in a cage, they can roam freely. However, they do not have outdoor access.
  • Certified Organic eggs come from birds that have not been fed any food with pesticides, herbicides, or commercial fertilizers.
  • "Pasture-raised" is a term commonly used by egg producers. However, it is not regulated by the USDA. If you see this on a carton, it is important to ensure it carries certifications from third parties, such as Certified Humane and Animal Humane.
  • Certified Humane pasture-raised eggs come from birds that can roam freely outside in a pasture covered with living vegetation for at least six hours per day. Each hen must have at least 108 square feet of pasture.
  • Grades AA, A, and B are used to grade the eggs' quality and appearance. The freshest, highest-quality eggs with strong shells will get Grade AA. Eggs that receive a Grade B are usually used for baking and cooking.

Another good way to know that you are getting quality eggs is by sourcing your eggs from local farms or farmers markets. You can usually speak directly with the farmer if you have any questions about the hens' living conditions.


Eggs are a good source of protein for individuals with gout because they are low in purines. Boiled and scrambled eggs pair well with other low-purine foods, including fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

Although the exact amount of eggs you should consume each day remains controversial, most experts agree that most healthy individuals can consume one or two eggs per day without any significant health risks.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the best diets for gout?

    A well-balanced diet that includes whole grains, vegetables, low-fat dairy, plant-based protein, cherries, and citrus fruits can help lower uric acid and prevent gout flares.

  • Are bacon and eggs bad for gout?

    Eggs are a good protein source for individuals with gout because they are low in purines. Bacon should be avoided because it is high in purines.

  • What foods are high in purines?

    Alcoholic beverages and organ meat (liver) are high in purines. Other meat and seafood, including venison, turkey, veal, scallops, herring, trout, tuna, and sardines, are also high in purines.

21 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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By Lindsey DeSoto, RD, LD
Lindsey Desoto is a registered dietitian with experience working with clients to improve their diet for health-related reasons. She enjoys staying up to date on the latest research and translating nutrition science into practical eating advice to help others live healthier lives.