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Beer Me.

You’ve probably heard that some components of wine (polyphenols like resveratrol and antioxidants) have been shown to have some health benefits.  They help increase your HDL (the “good” cholesterol) and protect your arteries.  However, all this is a little misleading.  The amount of wine you’d need to drink to get the health benefits of resveratrol would be over 2,000 ounces.  In one sitting.  A glass of wine is about 5 ounces.  So, if you want (or are able) to have 400 glasses of wine at a time, you’d be doing more damage to your liver than it’s worth.

Here’s important stuff:

  • Moderate consumption of ANY alcohol has shown some health benefits.  Not just red wine.
  • Beer has shown some additional benefits as well: reduced risk of kidney stones in men and better bone mineral density (which means a reduced risk of fracture as you age).
  • Beer actually has MORE B vitamins than wine (which help with energy levels).

Here’s the breakdown, as reported in an American Dietetic Association publication:

  • The more malt in the brew, the more B-Vitamins
  • The more sugar in the wort, the more alcohol
  • The more hops, the more phytochemicals (beneficial nutrients)
  • “Light beers” either have less alcohol, fewer carbs, or both
  • Darker beers may have more fiber

BOTTOM LINE: In general, choose ales over lagers – from an IPA to a stout.

This country was founded on beer.  It was.  Don’t believe me?  Google it.  The Mayflower stopped at (what became) Plymouth Colony because they were running low on beer.  The Pilgrims actually logged that in the ships records as the reason for going ashore.

So drink up! I’d be a bad dietitian if I didn’t mention that alcohol should only be consumed in moderation.  That’s two drinks for men and one for women.  So drink beer or wine or whatever you choose.  Just don’t drink 400 glasses.  Don’t even try.  Please.

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6 Comments to "Beer Me."

  1. TB1 says:

    Very cool blog here, especially the beer article. I like wine beer equally, but if I’m just going to have 1 drink, I find it easier to have a beer rather than open a bottle of wine and either let half go stale or drink more than I need/want. This is good to know, and also I liked the suggestions about the nutritional content of ales vs. lagers etc. Keep up the good work!!

  2. Ben says:

    Hey, nice blog!
    I heard a rumor though that you don’t actually like/drink beer! Any truth in that?

    • Kate Gardner says:

      haha. ok. Maybe I need to NOT send this blog to people I know. First — thanks :) And, Ben, you are correct. However, it is through no fault of my own — and if I could drink it, I would!

  3. Alison says:

    Okay, how is it that I sat through 4 pretty intense years of higher education and never knew that the Mayflower landed on Plymouth Rock because they ran out of beer? Clearly, they are teaching the wrong things in the classrooms these days….but that’s yet another reason why Kate’s blogs are so important! The recipes are quick, healthy and easier to make than even those of Rachel Ray, and I don’t have to have my laptop set to mute it for fear of it saying “YUM-O” an average of 24 times an episode! Now the only question left is how do I get the honor of leaving a testimonial????

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