Beer is a fascinating thing. There are few things more refreshing than a cold lager on a hot summer’s day, while a hearty stout will warm you up in the winter faster than any roaring fire. But for all its taste and pleasure, this tipple also has a number of health benefits when consumed in moderation. Read on to find out more about how beer can be beneficial in small quantities.
• Beer comes in pre-packaged servings, which is a boon when it comes to portion control. For those so inclined, this makes it easy to enjoy yourself without going overboard. And if you’re one of the more impulsive people in this world, at least you can keep track of how much you’ve had!
• Because it’s got so much yeast in it, beer is packed with B vitamins. The unfiltered kinds are particularly rich in B3, B6 and B9 (folic acid). The first is vital to cell repair, making it the perfect foil for the alcohol in beer. The second can treat symptoms of pre-menstrual syndrome, while the latter can help prevent colorectal cancer.
• Moderate consumption of beer is known to reduce anxiety and stress, in turn lowering your risk of developing heart-related ailments. It’s even been suggested by Mayo Clinic that beer can reduce your chances of suffering a stroke. Just remember to keep it limited.
• Silicon is a crucial mineral that most of us don’t really get enough of. It limits the brain’s absorption of aluminium, which is a proven contributor to the development and onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. Two (and just two) cold ones a day can reduce your risk significantly.
• The darker the beer, the higher the fibre content. Stouts, porters and ales can contribute as much as a gram of the soluble variety per 300 ml serving. If you find yourself facing digestive woes or problems being regular with bowel movements, a limited quantity of beer can be a fantastic addition to a high-fibre diet.
• Are you suffering from a cold? Warm barley can boost blood circulation, help you breathe while congested, provide immense relief for joint pain, and give a much-needed boost to your immune system. Warm up a bottle of lager in a double boiler, add four teaspoons of honey, and sip for relief.
• Do you have social anxiety? Is it tough for you to make friends or introduce yourself to new people? If so, beer might be your friend. As a social lubricant, it’s one of the best ways to loosen up and relax in order to make your presence felt. However, many people think that if one is good, several are better. If you can’t control your consumption, don’t use beer as a treatment for social anxiety.
• Insomnia has to be one of the most annoying medical conditions, often because those who suffer from it actually want to sleep! For less severe cases caused by physical rather than mental issues, a glass of beer before bedtime can push you into dreamland quicker than the toughest cough syrups.
• With all the vitamins and minerals in beer, it still is an alcoholic beverage. One of the best ways to get all the nutrition without any of the harmful ethanol is to add beer to your food before cooking. Whether it’s in the sauce or the batter, cooking beer will sap the alcohol and leave most of the nutrients intact.
..... Devashree Goenka