Why beer is good for you...
Stop the presses!! Find out why beer - everyone’s favourite tipple - might actually be good for your health.
It’s a well known fact - things that taste good are, without exception, bad for you.
Chips. Chocolate. Crisps. Fast food. More chips. Basically everything that Jamie Oliver has tried to deprive school children of. We’re constantly told that eating these items will see us wind up in an early grave.
So imagine our surprise when we read that beer, our faithful friend, the cause of so many a memorable (or not as the case may be) evening, might actually be GOOD FOR US.
But before you get carried away, we’re not saying beer is the latest super-food and you should drink it all day every day - as much as you might have fun doing so.
As ever, it’s a case of everything in moderation, but here are some of the ways in which the occasional pint of the good stuff can help you.
Due to its high silicon levels beer can significantly help bone density - the benefits were more clearly identified in those who drank pale ales. Unfortunately those people who drank excessively were found to have a higher risk of bone fractures (whether this was due to a decrease in bone density, just the fact that drunk people are more likely to fall over, we’re not entirely sure).
A Finnish study found that for each bottle of beer men drink daily their chances of developing kidney stones fell by 40% thanks to its high water content - and seeing as we don’t love the idea of having to pi$$ out tiny stones, it would be silly of us not to have a beer or three.
Reduces the risk of cancer
Unfortunately for us, it turns out that pan-frying meat produces carcinogens (called heterocyclic amines, if you were interested) - luckily beer has come to the rescue, as it always seems to. A Portuguese study showed that marinating meat in beer before frying gets rid of the majority of the causing-causing HCAs, as well as giving it a rather nice pubbish flavour.
Being the clever drink that it is, beer raises levels of HDL (aka ‘good’ cholesterol) that stops your arteries getting clogged up - lowering the risk of heart trouble. On top of this there are over a hundred studies showing how moderate alcohol consumption can reduce the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease by 25-40% - we like those odds! *cracks open a bottle*
In 2005 a study monitored the health of 11,000 older women - the results shows that those who drank around one drink each day lowered their risk of mental decline by up to 20%. Ironic, as for us drinking usually results in memory loss and poor decision making.
Reduces the risk of strokes
As if you weren’t already convinced about the benefits of drinking beer already, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health concluded that a moderate amount of beer can aid in the prevention of blood clots that can cause ischemic strokes - the most common form of stroke.
As you may have noticed, most of the above findings only apply when beer is drunk in moderation - so next time you down 12 pints you can’t get away with claiming you did it for the health benefits...