Is beer healthy?

How healthy is beer?

Status: 25.06.2018 10:58 a.m. | archive
Hops and malt, water and yeast - what is in beer actually sounds healthy.

Beer is the most consumed alcoholic drink in Germany: In 2014, the per capita consumption was 107 liters - only the Czechs drink more. While tart beers are preferred in the north of Germany, people in the south prefer light or wheat and in the Rhineland they prefer Kölsch and Alt. According to the Purity Law, beer still consists exclusively of the four basic ingredients water, hops, malt and yeast.

What beer should be able to do

Hardly any other drink is said to have as many positive properties as beer. On the one hand, it is supposed to prevent kidney stones, heart attacks and strokes. On the other hand, it should have a calming effect and make it easier to fall asleep. It is supposed to revitalize and cure acute states of exhaustion, promote hair growth and help with sexual unpleasantness. However, there is much to suggest that the harms and risks of alcohol outweigh the positive benefits of the active ingredients in beer - even with low consumption.

Hops are healthy, but too diluted in beer

In addition to alcohol and carbohydrates, beer contains minerals, trace elements and vitamins from barley as well as essential oils from hops. Hops belong to the hemp family. It contains valuable bitter substances and essential oils that give beer its typical flavor and help with poor appetite, stomach weakness and restlessness. Hops have a calming effect, but stimulate the metabolism. And it contains anti-inflammatory flavonoids. The polyphenol xanthohumol is also considered to be antioxidant and is not found in any other plant. However, these positive effects relate to hop extract. In fact, the amount of hops in beer is too small to be effective.

All sorts of vitamins, not a lot of minerals

The malt in beer provides many B vitamins. In particular, the vitamins B2 (riboflavin), B6 ​​(pyridoxine), panthenolic acid and niacin, which are important for the metabolism, are found in large quantities.

As a mineral in beer, phosphoric acid is an important component of cell building blocks. Beer also contains potassium and magnesium, but the concentrations are too low to have a positive effect on the electrolyte balance in the blood. Due to its low sodium content, beer has a positive effect on blood pressure. It also has a diuretic effect. However, water and tea also have the same effect.

Liquid bread - in terms of calories

And although beer is practically free of fat and completely cholesterol, it is a source of calories:

drinkKilocalories per 100 milliliters
Wheat beer38
Apple juice46
low-fat milk48

Studies show that moderate beer consumption can theoretically reduce body weight. In practice, the regular consumption of beer often leads to weight gain, the so-called beer belly. Beer increases the feeling of hunger more than other alcoholic drinks, especially since the bitter substances in hops stimulate the appetite. In addition, the alcohol in beer stops fat burning.

Not conducive to sleep

And with regard to the alleged improvement in sleep quality, the beer does worse than expected. In particular, the quality of sleep through the night is significantly affected by the alcohol content.

After all, non-alcoholic beer is a good alternative to classic sports drinks in the recreational sports sector, as it provides a lot of liquid and also minerals and electrolytes.

Beer on wine, stop that?

There is a lot of popular wisdom about the topic of alcohol. Some sayings extol alcohol as a sleep aid or digestive aid. What is the truth of such recommendations? more

Experts on the subject

Oliver Wesseloh, Dipl.-Ing. for brewing, world champion of sommeliers for beer
Kehrwieder creative brewery

Niels Schulz-Ruhtenberg, specialist in general medicine, nutritional and sports medicine
Am Kaiserkai 46, Hamburg
(040) 64 66 17 60

Jörg Klose
Paulan's Bremen
Schlachte 30, 28195 Bremen

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