What Happens To Your Body When You Drink Beer Every Night?

If you drink beer every night and it’s become
part of your nightly routine as a way to relax

after work, you might start to wonder how
that’s impacting your health. Turns out the

benefits, and consequences, of beer vary greatly
by how much you drink.

It may sound far-fetched, but drinking beer
may just stave off heart disease. Researchers

at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston,
Massachusetts found that men and women who

drank up to seven drinks each week experienced
a significantly lower risk, 20 percent in

men and 16 percent in women, of heart failure
when compared to people who abstained from

alcohol. Scott Solomon, the study’s lead author
and a senior physician at Brigham and Women’s

Hospital, summed up their findings like this:

“These findings suggest that drinking alcohol
in moderation does not contribute to an increased

risk of heart failure and may even be protective.
No level of alcohol intake was associated

with a higher risk of heart failure. However,
heavy alcohol use is certainly a risk factor

for deaths from any cause.”

Still, Solomon cautioned that although the
study shows an association between drinking

and a lower risk of heart failure, that wasn’t
to be taken as an indication that moderate

alcohol consumption caused the lower risk
as well.

According to a 2018 study, alcohol is the
third-leading cause of death in the United

States. The World Health Organization also
states that,

“Alcohol use is a risk factor for many cancer
types including cancer of the oral cavity,

pharynx, larynx, oesophagus, liver, colorectum
and breast.”

But there’s a little more to the story. Theresa
Hydes, a researcher at the United Kingdom’s

University Hospital Southampton, told Discover
magazine:

“While alcohol causes seven types of cancer,
the risk of most of these cancers does not

increase significantly until an individual
starts drinking heavily.”

However, she noted that breast cancer is the
anomaly. She stressed that at moderate levels

of alcohol intake, about 10 drinks per week,
the risk of breast cancer goes up more than

it does for other alcohol-related cancers.

That said, Hydes clarified that consuming
one to two cans of beer a few times each week

is, quote, “probably not harmful.” At the
same time, she also stressed these findings

shouldn’t be seen as a reason for someone
who has previously abstained to start drinking.

Although Mildred Bowers, who made headlines
for turning 103 in 2016, recommends beer for

others who want to live into their 100s, she
said longevity is really all down to who’s

got the genes for it.

As it turns out, though, a study later confirmed
that both light and moderate drinking does

indeed decrease the risk of mortality in both
sexes, but especially so in women, as reported

by The Telegraph. In fact, moderate drinking
is attributed to a 25 percent decrease in

what’s called, quote, “all-cause mortality”
and a 34 percent decreased risk of cardiovascular

disease-related mortality in women.

Still, the study’s authors continued to stress
that those who do choose to drink should be

mindful of how much they’re consuming. But
there’s good news for older women in particular:

  How To Drink A Beer

Giovanni de Gaetano, director of the department
of epidemiology added:

“For most older persons, the overall benefits
of light drinking, especially the reduced

cardiovascular disease risk, clearly outweigh
possible cancer risk.”

Not every medical expert believes drinking
beer can lead to a long life. After reviewing

large quantities of data, physician scientist
Sarah M. Hartz revealed that,

“…we now know that even the lightest daily
drinkers have an increased mortality risk…A

20 percent increase in risk of death is a
much bigger deal in older people who already

are at higher risk. Relatively few people
die in their 20s, so a 20 percent increase

in mortality is small but still significant.”

But what about the benefits to heart health?
Hartz acknowledged that those benefits are

real. She said,

“Consuming one or two drinks about four days
per week seemed to protect against cardiovascular

disease, but drinking every day eliminated
those benefits.”

So, should you or should you not be drinking
a nightly beer? Unfortunately, the science

very much depends on you. Hertz says:

“If you tailor medical recommendations to
an individual person, there may be situations

under which you would think that occasional
drinking potentially could be helpful.”

Having a beer every night doesn’t mean you’re
addicted to alcohol. But it can mean you’ve

developed a dependence. And there is a difference.
George Koob, director of the National Institute

on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, explained
to Men’s Health:

“Dependence often goes hand in hand with addiction,
but they’re not the same things. You can become

dependent on almost any substance if it’s
part of your daily rhythm, but that doesn’t

mean you’re addicted.”

Dependence isn’t unique to beer or alcohol,
and Koob further revealed to the publication

that you could also become dependent on something
as innocuous as eating dinner at the same

time every night. According to him,

“Anything that disrupts your normal routine
is going to put you on edge, but that’s not

an indication you have a use disorder.”

Nevertheless, it is wise to pay attention
to your consumption habits. If one is your

normal limit unless you’re under a lot of
stress, that could turn into a major problem.

If you go through a major stressor in life
that increases your number of drinks over

a longer period of time, that’s something
to be concerned about.

Move over milk, beer is here to strengthen
our bones. According to a 2010 study conducted

by researchers from the department of food
science and technology at the University of

California, Davis, beer was found to be an
abundant source of dietary silicon. The chemical

can increase bone mineral density and may,
in turn, help prevent osteoporosis.

Those of you who like hoppy or malty beers
will see the most of these benefits. That’s

because of the way these types of beers are
brewed; researchers looked at the amount of

silicon in the raw materials of these beers
and then compared it to the final product.

Since most of the silicon is in the barley
husk, it’s the beers made from barley that

  What Happens To Your Body When You Drink Beer Everyday

hasn’t been heavily roasted that are the best
for your bones. Alternately, researchers also

found that hops contained more silicon than
grain, so, the higher the hops, the better

it is for your bones.

What does that mean in a practical sense?
That you should reach for the hoppiest beers

you can find if you want to make the most
of this benefit. While you can’t exactly call

it a health drink, there’s no denying the
science.

Despite being good for heart health, beer
can still raise your blood pressure. But it’s

not as simple as that. There are other studies
that seem to suggest that light to moderate

drinking can result in a subtle drop in blood
pressure in some cases. So, if alcohol does

happen to raise your blood pressure as opposed
to lowering it, is that safe? Arthur Klatsky,

an investigator for Kaiser Permanente’s research
division, explained to WebMD:

“Adults above the age of 50 are at much higher
risk of heart attack and stroke than they

are of any possible harmful effects to light-moderate
drinking. So even if they have high blood

pressure, they could see the health benefit
from something like a glass of red wine a

day.”

Or, you know, a can of beer.

It’s well-known that beer contains a lot of
good things, and while that’s all well and

good, don’t expect overindulging in alcohol
every night for weeks at a time to do your

body good. Alcohol, including beer, can actually
mean you’re going to end up lacking in some

vital nutrients. Rob Hobson, nutritional director
at Healthspan and co-author of The Detox Kitchen

Bible, explained to Express that regular drinking
can have unforeseen side-effects. According

to Hobson,

“Alcohol can increase the demand for certain
nutrients used to help the body deal with

alcohol, such as the B vitamins.”

Although you could normally get a dose of
vitamin B12 from dairy, eggs, and beef, your

body is going to have a hard time absorbing
them if you drink too much beer over an extended

period of time.

What’s going on here is a sort of domino effect.
Even moderate consumption of alcohol can cause

inflammation of the stomach, and it’s this
inflammation that causes your body’s cells

to stop producing what’s known as the “intrinsic
factor,” which is what aids absorption of

B vitamins. And that, over the long term,
could lead to the build-up of a compound called

homocysteine. A buildup of that compound could
increase a person’s risk for heart attack

or stroke.

Drinking any kind of alcohol in excess can
lead to developing alcoholic liver disease.

According to Medical News Today, this potentially
fatal condition is a result of, quote, “overconsuming

alcohol that damages the liver, leading to
a buildup of fats, inflammation, and scarring.”

Beer-drinkers are more at risk to develop
this disease than are wine-drinkers, the publication

reported. Women, too, are at an increased
risk of developing alcohol-induced liver injuries

due to the slower rate at which they metabolize
alcohol.

Nevertheless, the amount of alcohol consumed
makes a difference. Women who drink more than

two drinks a day and men who drink more than
three per day for longer than five years are

  How To Drink & NOT Get Drunk

more likely to develop alcoholic liver disease,
according to a report published in The American

Journal of Gastroenterology. And that’s something
to think about in the long-term.

Charles Bamforth, a professor of malting and
brewing sciences at the University of California,

Davis has said that beer contains more nutrients
than any other alcoholic beverage. The list

of nutrients is a long one, and that includes
fiber: beer’s full of it. Bamforth says:

“This [fiber] is broken down to form [probiotics]
which help promote the growth of healthy bacteria

in the gut. Research has shown that low doses
of alcohol, including beer, stimulate appetite

and promote bowel function in the elderly.”

Polyphenols are also found in beer, and a
study published in 2007 by the British Journal

of Nutrition confirmed that these compounds
may indeed benefit the immune system. Consume

too much beer or wine, though, and you can
actually suppress your immune system. It’s

impossible to stress too much: moderation
is key, and it’s important not to go overboard

when it comes to those nightly beers. It’s
easy to do, and it’s easy to undo all the

potential good that knocking back a cold one
can do for you, mind, body, and soul.

“I’m excited, I feel relaxed, and I’m ready
to party!”

It’s important to know what happens to your
body when you drink and the ways drinking

alcohol can affect your looks. And, because
of the nutritional content of beer, Bamforth

also stresses that when you’re drinking, you’ll
need to keep in mind that you’re consuming

calories, too. He says, quote, “beer is in
no way empty calories.”

George Philliskirk, a specialist in yeast
research at The Institute of Brewing and Distillery,

further explained it this way:

“Glass for glass, beer is less calorific than
wine. It is the lifestyle that gives a beer-drinker

a belly, not the drinking itself. Although
the volume of beer consumed is generally more

than wine, if you limit yourself to a pint
a day you are consuming only a few more calories

than if you drank a large glass of wine.”

Beer has been obviously deemed the culprit
of its namesake the “beer belly,” but it’s

true that ale is not solely responsible. It
doesn’t matter if you’re drinking too much

beer, eating too much cake, chowing down on
too many snacks in front of the TV, or hitting

the local fast food drive through too often.
It’s all going to add up to extra calories

and some extra weight. It’s all about moderation,
and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, with

or without a frosty cold beverage each and
every night.

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