After years of research, scientists have proved that drinking alcohol increases the risk of suffering from gout – and also found the level of risk depends on your chosen beverage, with those who like a pint of beer the most at risk. Although it had been suspected that gout was linked to alcohol, the theory had never been proved, until the latest study of nearly 50,000 men carried out by a team at Massachusetts General Hospital found those who over-indulge in beer, in particular, are at heightened risk. Those who drank spirits were found less likely to be linked with the condition while people who drank a moderate amount of wine had no increased risk at all. The research followed 47,000 male medical staff over a 12-year period. 730 of the volunteers developed gout. Those who drank two or more beers per day were found to be 2.5 times more likely to develop gout than those who did not drink at all. The same level of spirit consumption raised the risk by 1.6 times, while drinking a moderate amount of wine each did not increase the risk at all. Lead researcher Dr Hyon Choi said: "These findings suggest that certain non-alcoholic components that vary across these alcoholic beverages play an important role in the incidence of gout."