AT long last, the news we’ve been waiting for has finally arrived: Beer is good for you (but only in moderation).
Thanks to the fermentation process, which is used to make beer, the refreshing golden liquid so many people love so much actually contains quite a few gut-friendly compounds.
But before you get too excited, as with anything, it’s only good for you in moderation. And in beer’s case, moderation means one 330ml-440ml (ABV 5.5%) a day, alongside a balanced and healthy diet.
According to a recent study by the Institute of Food and Nutrition Science and Technology (ICTAN-CSIC), in Madrid, beer is just one of many fermented beverages that could have ‘potentially beneficial effects on intestinal health’.
“Beer provides a multitude of compounds such as fluoride, silicon, choline and folic acid in significant quantities, [so consuming] two units [per day] could provide up to 10% of the recommended daily amount of these compounds,” said researcher Natalia Gonzalez-Zancada.
Beer is also a source of dietary fibre and rich in polyphenols, from the malt and hops, which have antioxidant properties.
Therefore, González-Zancada suggests that when consuming alcoholic beverages in moderation, the ‘harmful effects of ethanol, if any, could be counteracted by the beneficial effects of bioactive compounds’ – these are what help to promote good health.
This is because the fermentation process (the extraction of energy from carbohydrates) in the intestine produces energy for microbial proliferation (the process by which an organism produces another of its kind) and the production of metabolites, such as short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), which regulate inflammatory responses and intestinal hormone secretion.
Basically, drinking a (small) beer a day could actually be good for us – that’s enough confirmation for us. ‘¡Una cerveza por favor!’
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