Beer is literally the most perfect creation of all time. Our favorite golden beverage actually dates all the way back to Ancient Mesopotamia, so it’s clear everyone unanimously loves the stuff for it to be around this long. But besides tasting great and being the main ingredient of a fun time, beer actually has more health benefits than you would think, many of which are listed here. Just note that most of these results are based on the consumption of one to two beers per day, and no more. If you’re a bar owner, we suggest printing this out and tacking it to the wall of your establishment.
1. Promotes Cardiovascular Health
Beer improves heart function in many ways. First, the drink can lower your chances of having a heart attack by 40-60%. Beer also contains Vitamin B6, which is known to reduce the compilation of this stuff called homocysteine, a known exaggerator of heart disease. Beer also thins the blood and aids in the prevention of blood clots and lowers inflammation. Many of the studies involving beer’s effect on the cardiovascular system were run at the Fondazion di Ricerca e Cura in Italy. Thank you, Italians, for all the noble work you have done for us.
2. Improves Kidney Health
If you’re a guy, apparently the number of beers you drink has a direct impact on your chances for developing kidney stones. This is seriously wild. According to a group of scientists in Finland, each beer can reduce the risk of kidney stones up to 40%! When asked why this could be the case, there were a few hypotheses, but no clear answers. They say it could be the increased trips to the bathroom or the the fact that the hops from beer has an effect on the speed of the release of calcium in the body, but whatever it is, we’ll take it.
3. Reduces the Risk of Cataracts
While this one is pretty impressive, there is a catch. Researchers in Canada carried out experiments that led to the conclusion that one beer per day, especially if it’s a darker beer, can boost your body’s production of antioxidants in a way that could reduce your risk of developing cataracts, or even stop them from forming in general. Here’s where it gets bad. Apparently if you have three or more drinks per day, the effect is actually the opposite, meaning your chance of forming cataracts is more likely. Dang.
4. Prevents Diabetes
In 2011, Harvard conducted a study on the effect of moderate beer consumption and its correlation to Type 2 Diabetes. The study showed that drinking up to two beers per day can reduce your risk for this disease by 25%. This occurs because the alcohol in beer helps your body regulate your insulin production, which is one of the main concerns of diabetes. Drink up me hearties, yo ho!
5. Contributes Towards Post-Workout Hydration
We honestly thought this one was a rumor and we couldn’t be happier to know it’s true. Apparently beer is just as effective, if not more effective than water at hydrating you after a big workout. This study was executed in Spain, where researchers had their subjects exercise until their body reached the control temperature. Then, half of the subjects drank water, and the other half were lucky enough to be treated to a nice, cold brewski. Shockingly enough, the people who had the beer were more hydrated than the others. To be honest, it was by a slim margin, but we’ll take what we can get.
6. Helps Develop Anti-Cancer Properties
Beer can aid the body in exhibiting anti-cancer properties, and we have a little antioxidant named xanthohumol to thank. This compound is found in hops, which are an essential ingredient for beer-making, and it has been known to take cancer-causing enzymes head-on, specifically, the ones that can lead to prostate cancer in men and breast cancer in women.
7. Boosts Your Memory
You would think the opposite, but beer actually improves your memory. As a matter of fact, those who drink beer are 23% less likely to develop certain memory-related illnesses like dementia and Alzheimer’s. Over the years, it has been revealed that one of the possible causes of Alzheimer’s is an an increased amount of aluminum in the body. Beer contains silicon, which scientists believe aid in the prevention of increased aluminum levels, therefore lowering your chances of developing Alzheimer’s.
8. Improves Bone Density
According to a study supervised by Tufts University in 2009, moderate beer drinkers have an average of up to 4.5% greater bone density that those who don’t indulge in a daily brew. This also has to do with the silicon content in beer, which is an important part of healthy bones, in addition to brain health, as we established above. Having stronger bones means your chances of bone fractures and getting osteoporosis is much lower. Granted, silicon can’t protect you from being dumb and falling down the stairs, so keep that in mind.
9. Aids in a Healthy Digestive System
Beer contains a healthy amount of fiber which is an important aspect of a healthy digestive system. It can also improve production of other necessary digestive components like pancreatic enzymes, gastrin, gastric acid, and, wait for it, cholecystokinin. This fact holds especially true the darker the beer, so don’t be afraid to sip on a Guinness every now and then. And if you’ve ever had too rough of a Friday night, you can attest that beer definitely prevents you from intestinal maladies like constipation.
10. Acts as a Cold Remedy
Just having a #flashbackfriday of last year’s #AustinMash with our dudes @austinbeerworks. We’re doing it all over again next week—get ready to get weirder, Austin. Tickets at brooklynbrewerymash.com.
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You might gag a little bit with this one, but drinking a warm beer can serve as a cold remedy. No one likes a warm beer, but if it’ll get rid of your sniffles, it’s worth a try. Apparently when barley, a common grain used in brewing beer, is heated, it can reduce congestion and get your blood flowing. Barley can also boost your immunity and attend to any joint pain you might have. If you’re daring enough to try this, be careful when heating up your beer. The most efficient way to do this is to warm the beer in a double boiler, so it’s not in direct contact with the heat.
11. Can Treat Dandruff
If you have dandruff, throw out the Head & Shoulders and get yourself a beer instead. By rinsing your hair with beer a few times a week, you can eliminate dandruff and improve the quality of your hair in general. This can be attributed to the high amount of yeast in beer, which can help balance everything out on your scalp. Beer is also high in Vitamin B, which is why your locks will end up shiny and soft after this. Plus, you’ll get to smell like beer, which is probably every man’s dream.