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Beer and health
It has been known for centuries that beer, in moderation, is a healthy drink.
How much should you drink?
As you can see, opinions vary considerably. Therefore, it’s best to follow the rule of no
more than four glasses a day.
Alcohol and mortality
The graph below indicates that alcohol protects against cardiovascular disease as long
as one does not consume more than 5 to 9 units a day, where one unit contains 10 grams
of alcohol (9 units corresponds to 2.1 litres of beer a day). Alcohol consumption is as-
sociated with a rise in the level of high-density lipoproteins (HDL) and apolipoproteins,
which act to protect against diseases of the coronary artery. In addition, alcohol reduces
low-density lipoproteins (LDL), which are associated with hardening of the arteries.
Fat
Beer does not contain any fat.
Calories in beer
A rule of thumb to calculate the calorie count in beer: multiply the alcohol content by 9
to obtain the number of kcal per 100 ml.
Fibres
Believe it or not: beer contains fibres, around 3 to 10 grams per litre. The term used by
brewers for these fibres, which originate from the barley grain, is “beta-glucans”. They
can lower cholesterol in the blood and therefore protect against cardiovascular disease.
Proteins
Beer contains 0.2 to 0.5 g/100 ml of proteins – more than wine, but much less than milk.
Most beers contain all the essential amino acids.
Minerals
Since beer is to a large extent composed of water, the mineral content of beer is highly
dependent on the minerals in the brewing water. If we look at the most important miner-
als (potassium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus), we can say that one 33 cl PALM
a day provides 10% of the requirement for these minerals. Beer is also a major source of
bioavailable silicon, which in turn reduces the aluminium content in the body.
Vitamins and trace elements
Beer is a good source for a number of vitamins, mainly those in the B group: riboflavin,
niacin, folic acid, pyridoxine and pantothenic acid. These are water-soluble vitamins, and
one 33 cl PALM a day provides 10% to 20% of our daily requirement.
Polyphenols
The polyphenols in beer come from the malt and hops. They also occur in red wine and
have antioxidant properties; in other words, they can prevent cardiovascular disease.
Hop constituents
Hops contain a wide range of components which have been studied intensively in re-
cent years. One of the best known is 8-prenylnaringenin, a constituent that can prevent
cancer.
Australia
10
4
men
51
938
3.8
10
2
women
25
469
1.9
Canada
13.6
2
men
34
638
2.6
13.6
0.7
women
12
223
0.9
Denmark
12
3
men
46
844
3.4
12
2
women
30
563
2.3
UK
8
4
men
41
750
3.0
8
3
women
30
563
2.3
USA
12
2
men
30
563
2.3
12
1
women
15
281
1.1
definition of a unit
(expressed in grams
of alcohol)
official
recommended max.
number of units
gender
ml of alcohol per
day
equivalent ml of
beer per day
equivalent number
of 25 cl glasses of
beer per day
1.5
1
0.5
0
1
2 to 3
3 to 4
6 to 9
>10
Glasses / day
Relative risk
mortality
cardiovascular disease
Drink / per 100 ml
kcal
ml Alc
g
carbohydrates
g
proteins
PALM
46.5
5.4
4.32
0.27
Dobbel PALM
52.0
6.2
4.54
0.25
PALM Royale
63.1
7.5
5.53
0.24
STEENBRUGGE Tripel
67.8
8.7
5.10
0.40
STEENBRUGGE Dubbel Bruin
54.9
6.5
4.86
0.38
STEENBRUGGE Blond
52.5
6.5
4.31
0.33
STEENBRUGGE Blanche-Wit
44.3
5.0
4.28
0.33
BRUGGE Tripel
67.8
8.7
5.10
0.40
ESTAMINET
47.3
5.2
4.74
0.34
RODENBACH
46.4
5.2
4.54
0.40
RODENBACH Grand Cru
53.5
6.0
5.13
0.44
Oude Geuze BOON
52.0
6.5
2.00
0.22
Red Wine
96.0
13
3.00
0.20
White Wine
80.0
11.5
3.00
0.20
Full-fat Milk
66.0
0.0
4.30
3.70
Semi-skimmed milk
47.0
0.0
4.80
3.40
06.3
our thoroughbred beers from KEG TO GLASS
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