Alcohol, in moderation, can actually be good for you. Salud!
We always hear about the health values of having a glass of wine, but rarely do we hear of what a mug of beer can do for us. Instead, one of the first things we often think about when we order our favorite IPA is that dreaded beer belly. Though you may be worried about stretching your waistline if you consume too much, you don't always have to abandon the real deal for "lite beer", because there are real health benefits to enjoying a full fat, cold stout.
Yes, that frothy mug of wheat and barley can help to boost our immunity, protect our ticker as well as keep our blood pressure in check. So pour yourself a glass and let's take a look at why your favorite ale is probably more than just empty calories.
Fend off Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases: In a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, it was reported that a compound from hops may protect brain cells from damage and possibly slow the development of neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
Keep Your Ticker Ticking: Red wine gets promoted as the spirit that can keep our hearts protected — but don't overlook beer. In a preliminary study out of Penn State, researchers found that beer had a positive effect on HDL levels even among heavy drinkers. They looked at more than 80,000 participants for six years and in that time span, while HDL levels decreased, the participants that drank beer had a slower decrease in HDL. This lead them to surmise that beer can lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Avoid Crippling Pain: If you have ever been unlucky enough to pass a kidney stone or two, you know you would wish it on your worst enemy. Luckily researchers from Finland have discovered that each bottle of beer that is consumed can lower your risk of developing these nasty little deposits. Although they were unable to explicate the correlation, they assumed that the number of bathroom trips to evacuate all that fluid intake might play a role in keeping the kidney healthy.
Lower Your Blood Pressure: About 75 million American adults have high blood pressure, which is responsible for a wide variety of health problems including heart disease and strokes. But Harvard researchers have reported that beer may lower our risk for hypertension. Their research suggests that those who drink beer in moderation are less likely to have high blood pressure than those drink other spirits.