11 Surprising Health Benefits of Beer
refreshing cold beer is the perfect way to relax at
the end of a busy day. Drinking too much has been
associated with liver and heart problems and even
some types of cancer. But did you know that, when
taken in moderation, beer can be good for your
health? Generally, moderate consumption is
considered one 12-ounce beer per day for women and
two for men.
Beer is created from water, barley, hops and yeast.
This fat-free, cholesterol-free beverage contains
significant amounts of nutrients, including soluble
fiber, magnesium, selenium, potassium, phosphorus,
biotin, chromium and B vitamins like vitamin B6,
vitamin B12, and folic acid.
Several research studies have shown that beer is
good for your overall health and helps ward off many
Here are some of the surprising health benefits of
1. Lowers Heart Disease Risk
According to the Harvard School of Public Health,
beer can decrease the risk of heart diseases by
approximately 20% to 40%. Researchers from Harokopio
University in Athens have also found that moderate
consumption of this beverage lowers cardiovascular
This is mainly because of the soluble fiber present
in beer that helps lower LDL, or “bad” cholesterol,
in the blood. A small amount of beer on a regular
basis will increase the level of HDL, or “good”
cholesterol, which in turn reduces the chances of
arteries hardening and blood thickening, the two
main causes of heart attacks. Also there are
polyphenols in beer, which are heart-healthy
2. Reduces Kidney Stones
Beer is also known to decrease the risk of kidney
stones. A study in Finland found that beer taken in
moderation daily can reduce the risk of developing
kidney stones by 40%. The high water content (about
93%) in beer helps keep the kidneys working properly
and flush harmful toxins out of the system.
Also, the diuretic effect of beer will not cause
dehydration, which is one of the leading causes of
kidney stones. According to the Academy of Nutrition
and Dietetics, compounds in hops help slow the
release of calcium from bones, preventing buildup of
the lost calcium in the kidneys in the form of
3. Boosts Brain Health
Researchers at Rush University Medical Center have
shown that beer reduces the risk of developing
memory problems later in life by 23%.
Moderate intake decreases the incidence of
Alzheimer’s and dementia because beer triggers the
growth of new brain cells. Also, beer allows the
brain to enter a more flexible state of attention,
thereby improving memory, concentration and
4. Guards against Strokes
Several studies by the American Stroke Association
have shown that moderate beer drinkers cut down
their risk of strokes by up to 50% compared with
According to researchers at the Harvard School of
Public Health, moderate amounts of beer daily helps
prevent blood clots that block blood flow to the
heart, neck and brain.
These blood clots can cause ischemic stroke, which
occurs when an artery to the brain is blocked.
However, when you drink little beer, the arteries
soon become flexible and blood flow improves
5. Makes Bones Stronger
Beer contains high levels of silicon, a healthy
compound that is linked to better bone health.
Silicon has been found to increase bone mineral
density and improve bone strength.
According to a 2009 study done at Tufts University,
older people who have the habit of drinking beer in
moderate amounts daily had higher bone density.
However, beer in large quantities will weaken the
bones and increase the risk of bone fractures.
6. Prevents Prostate Cancer
Moderate consumption of beer can provide anti-cancer
benefits as well. Beer contains xanthohumol, a
powerful antioxidant known to have anti-cancer
It blocks a chemical reaction that can lead to the
development of prostate cancer in men. It is also
known to reduce the chances in females of getting
7. Reduces Risk of Diabetes
Many studies have found that moderate beer
consumption may lower the risk of diseases like
diabetes. The alcohol present in beer increases
insulin sensitivity, which helps protect against
According to a 2011 Harvard study of about 38,000
middle-aged men, those who drank one to two beers
daily reduced their risk of developing type 2
diabetes by 25%.
However, if you have diabetes you must choose beers
with low levels of carbohydrates. Beer is a good
source of soluble fiber, an important part of a
healthy diet plan for those suffering from diabetes.
8. Cuts Alzheimer’s Risk
Scientists at Loyola University Chicago Stritch
School of Medicine analyzed several studies and came
to the conclusion that moderate beer drinkers were
23 percent less likely to develop different forms of
dementia and cognitive impairment.
This finding can be attributed to the silicon
content in beer which helps to protect the brain
from the harmful effects of aluminum. High amounts
of aluminum in the body is one of the possible
causes behind Alzheimer’s. However, this doesn’t
mean that non-drinkers should start drinking beer to
lower their risk of developing Alzheimer’s.
9. Stronger Bones
Beer contains high levels of silicon, which is
linked to bone health. In a 2009 study at Tufts
University and other centers, older men and women
who swigged one or two drinks daily had higher bone
density, with the greatest benefits found in those
who favored beer or wine. However, downing more than
two drinks was linked to increased risk for
For the best bone-building benefits, reach for pale
ale, since a 2010 study of 100 types of beer from
around the word identified these brews as richest in
silicon, while light lagers and non-alcoholic beers
contained the least.
10. Hydrates Skin
Beer hydrates the skin from within. In fact,
drinking beer after a workout rehydrates the body
better than water. This is mainly due to the
carbonation in beer that helps quench thirst better.
It has also been found that ancient Egyptians took
beer baths to hydrate their skin in the scorching
heat of the desert. Also, the high water content in
beer helps flush toxins out of the skin, which gives
the face a natural glow.
11. Treats Dandruff
High in vitamin B and yeast, beer is considered one
of the best natural dandruff treatments. Rinse your
hair with a bottle of beer two to three times a week
and soon the problem of dandruff will be a matter of
Be sure to wash your hair properly after, or the
scent of beer may linger on you for a while. This
treatment will also make your hair extra soft and
Whether hanging out with friends watching a movie,
or enjoying a party, choose beer as your beverage
for the day. But drink it in limited amounts to
enjoy its health benefits.
Note: Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding
should not drink alcoholic beverages, including