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Beer is good for you

Two independent studies have both concluded that moderate beer drinking can be beneficial to the heart, and reduce susceptability to heart attacks.

A Dutch study by the TNO Nutrition & Food Research Institute, has concluded that drinking three quarters of a pint of beer a day was found to increase the levels of Vitamin B6 in the blood by 30%. The researchers found that the vitamin prevented the build up of Homocysteine, an Amino acid known to cause cardiovascular disease. They studied 11 healthy men aged between 44 and 59 for a period of 12 weeks, drinking beer, red wine, gin and water with their evening meal for a period of three weeks each. Homocysteine levels did not rise after beer consumption in any of the Guinea Pigs, but rose by 8% on average after three weeks of red wine consumption and by an average of 9% after three weeks of gin drinking. All were less than with just water. Red wine increased the Vitamin B6 level by 17%, and the Gin by 15%, compared with 30% with beer.

So beer is the best! The researchers did point out that alcoholics have significantly raised Homocysteine levels, caused by chronic drinking and low Vitamin B intake, so moderate drinking is the key.

A study of Czech men, found that those who drank up to two pints of beer a day had the lowest risk of coronary heart disease, but heavy drinking led to a loss of the protective effect of alcohol. They found that the lowest risk of heart disease was among men who drank daily, and drank between 4 to 9 litres ( 8 to 16 pints ) of beer a week. The conclusion of this study was that the benefits of moderate drinking are related more to Ethanol, the alcohol in alcoholic drinks, than to specific ingredients, although beer drinkers seemed to have better protection than either wine or spirits drinkers. Again this is only true of moderate drinking.

It just goes to prove that a little of what you fancy really is good for you, and remember, with real cask conditioned beer there are no nasty chemical ingredients either, only good wholesome natural barley (or wheat), hops, yeast, and water. Happy heart saving.
Paul Redfern.

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