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HEALTH HINTS

A Happy Hour for your Health

By: Nicole LunaA Happy Hour for your Health

As a beer connoisseur, I am delighted to know that my favorite alcoholic beverage has actual health benefits backed by research and studies. Its major ingredients contain antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins that are good for the body. Here are five health benefits of beer that everyone should know.

  1. Beer helps with better bone health. This is due to dietary silicon, an important component for bone development, growth, and mineral density.  A study from the Journal of the American Medical Association found that beer drinkers were 38% less likely to have osteoporosis compared to non-drinkers. A review from the International Journal of Endocrinology showed that beer consumption increased bone density in men.
     
  2. Beer helps in reducing the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Dutch researchers found in a 4-year study among 38,000 male health professionals that those who drank beer were significantly less likely to be diagnosed with this condition. A study from the European Association for the Study of Diabetes also revealed that those who drank 3-4 beers per week were less inclined to develop diabetes than non-drinkers.

 

  1. Beer helps boost brain health. Researchers from Loyola University in Chicago found that beer drinkers are 23% less probable to develop Alzheimer’s and dementia than those who abstain from it. An oft-quoted study comes from Consciousness and Cognition wherein among the 40 men who watched a movie while completing verbal puzzles, those who drank beer with a 7.5% blood alcohol content were able to solve the problems a bit faster than their sober counterparts.
     
  2. Beer helps improve heart health. It helps with risk factors of heart disease such as lowering blood pressure and increasing high-density lipoprotein (HDL) or good cholesterol. A study presented at the American Heart Association in 2016 showed that healthy Chinese adults who are beer drinkers have a slower decline in HDL after some time. Another study saw that 42% of beer-drinking men are less likely to die from heart disease.
     
  3. Beer helps prevent kidney stones. A Finnish study found a 40% decreased risk in kidney stone formation among those who consume a bottle of beer daily. Some researchers note that hops might be responsible for this as it delays the release of calcium to the bones. Calcium, when reabsorbed in the kidneys, become hurtful stones.


It is important to take note that the studies mentioned refer to moderate drinkers. In women, that is equivalent to a drink per day while it is two servings in men. Too much beer is the opposite of these health benefits, so remember to drink moderately.

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