Dark Beer is Better for the Heart
January 22, 2004
Like chocolate and wine, the darker the beer, the better it may be for your health, according to a new study.
In a comparison of Guinness stout, a dark beer and Heineken, a light beer, the darker brew had substantially more anti-clotting activity, according to a University of Wisconsin-Madison scientist. He found:
- Guinness proved to be about twice as effective at preventing the blood platelets from clumping and forming the kind of clot that can cause a heart attack -- a result of the flavonoids in the beer.
- Flavonoids also work to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol, which plays a role in causing atherosclerosis -- known as hardening of the arteries.
- In addition, flavonoids help arteries dilate, which improves blood flow and blood pressure.
To get the optimal anti-clotting effect, a person would have to reach a blood alcohol level of 0.06 percent. For the typical person, that could be accomplished with two 12-ounce bottles.
However, doctors warn that even though dark beer may have heart-health properties, it also has higher calories.
Source: John Fauber, "Dark for the Heart," Indianapolis Star, January 7, 2004.
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