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The Health Benefits of Beer:

You’ve probably heard all about the health benefits of a glass of wine a day, but the segment that seems to be largely ignored is the mounting evidence in support of craft microbrewed beer and its many natural health rewards. To be clear, domestic industrial mass-produced brewers, offer little more than watered down beer with corn, rice and chemicals to prolong shelf life, researchers are beginning to discover a host of health benefits to the world’s more niche craft and microbrews. These craft beers are brewed with only these natural raw materials- Barley, Hops, Yeast and Water.

DISCLAIMER:
The proposed health benefits are reserved exclusively for craft and microbrewed beer – more mainstream domestic brands have stripped most of their beers’ natural nutrients and are therefore excluded. Please drink responsibly and in moderation.

OPTIMAL INTAKE = OPTIMAL LIFE SPAN:
While binge drinking will never be condoned by any right-minded organization, scientists and health consultants alike, they have all concluded that two pints a day for the average sized male (one pint per day for women) is optimal for the beer and its health benefits. According to The Famous U-Shaped Curve, those who drink two pints of craft beer per day have an improved mortality rate of 20-30% -- those whom abstain and those that over indulge are that much more likely to expire sooner.

SILICON = STRONG BONES:
Craft beers are rich in many vitamins and minerals, however, most notable is that it contains large quantities of calcium and silicon (soluble silica) – a mineral like calcium that helps to build strong bones, teeth, hair and nails. Of course, not all craft beers have the same level of silicon so it’s important to look for beers with high levels of barley and hops (IPAs and Pale Ales are a great source but wheat, light and non-alcoholic beers are not a significant source).

To put it into perspective, a half pint of beer provides one-third of the suggested daily value of soluble silica, therefore, by drinking the suggested amount, one can exceed their suggested daily intake of this constructive mineral.

FRINGE BENEFIT:
Silica, by nature, attracts and binds to aluminum, which can help to rid the body of aluminum. Although it hasn’t been definitively proven, aluminum is thought to be the cause of Alzheimer’s; therefore, drinking craft beer now could very well decrease your chances of Alzheimer’s later.

B VITAMINS = IMPROVED VITAL SYSTEMS:
Another of the more plentiful vitamins and minerals in craft beer is its range of B Vitamins. In addition to being a rich source of potassium, craft beers contain Folic Acid (great for vascular health) and B-12, which plays a key role in the formation of blood and the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system.

GOOD CHOLESTEROL = GOOD HEART:
The ethanol within craft beer, and alcohol in general, has been accredited with boosting HDL levels (High-Density Lipoprotein), aka; good cholesterol. In short, increased HDL levels doesn’t necessarily cure heart disease but it has been known to curb cardiovascular diseases because of its ability to lower blood pressure, dilate blood vessels and prevent atherosclerosis (the thickening of artery walls as a result of the accumulation of cholesterol).

CARBOHYDRATES + FIBER = BODILY BALANCE:
Because it’s packed with carbohydrates and dietary fiber derived from barley, oats, etc, beer is often referred to as liquid bread. In the end, carbohydrates can provide easily obtained energy and because beer has 6g of fiber per liter (at a minimum), it helps to keep the digestive system in balance, as well as, assists in the battle against diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

ANTIOXIDANTS = CELLULAR WELLNESS:
Antioxidants act as the bouncer of the cellular world; tossing out the ruffians to ensure cellular wellness. Even though wine has become the poster child for antioxidants, it’s worth noting that beer contains a comparable amount of antioxidants to red wine and as much as five-times as many antioxidants as white wine!

LESS STRESS = ANTIULCERATIVE:
Of course, beer has also been shown to lower stress. While this improves anyone’s overall quality of life, it also lowers blood pressure and acts as an antiulcerative, helping to prevent ulcers and/or promoting their healing.

POLYPHENOLS = ANTICARCINOGEN:
The Polyphenols in hops are said to have an anticarcinogenic effect. That said, because craft beer has approximately 10-30 times more hops than your average industrial mass-produced beers, researches have shown that microbrews can reduce the occurrence of cancers or lessen the severity of cancers that do occur.

RECAP: The Benefits of Beer vs. Wine
Both beer and wine have been cited for their health benefits but is one better than the other? Well, it’s hard to say. Both are fat free substances, however, beer carries more calories (derived from the carbohydrates that make up about one-third of the total calories). That said, while beer carries more calories by nature, it also brings with it some protein that is nearly non-existent in wine, as well as, it contains more silicon and B vitamins (from yeast) that are filtered out of wine.

In the end, both substances are made from ingredients that initially carry with them similar health benefits, however, by the time the fermentation and filtering processes are completed, wine loses most of its would-be-healthy components and the grains, barley and wheat found in many craft beers survive to carry out the health benefits.

SOURCES:
http://youtu.be/gvgRiLFCnj8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1D1d9xzPqyQ&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufcPIJuP9o0&feature=related
http://www.thebrewmaster.in/perceived-health-benefits-of-micro-brewery-beer/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/16/beer-health-benefits_n_1097445.html
http://www.craftbeer.com/pages/beerology/beer-and-health
http://www.beer-brewing-advice.com/Health_Benefits_Of_Beer.html
http://www.brewersofeurope.org/docs/publications/pdf-Mei04.pdf

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