Beer is the oldest and most popular alcoholic drink in the world with a small percentage of alcohol. It has a refreshing and characteristic flavor. New research brings new insights into the composition and biological compounds of this drink that act positively on the overall metabolism.
Beer acts on regenerating, refreshing, toning and hydrating the body and is a natural source of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and certain amino acids and flavonoids, known and important antioxidants. This is supported by the results of recent studies that highlight the importance of the performance of certain ingredients of beer on the overall metabolism and how moderate beer consumption can contribute to the prevention and treatment of certain diseases and conditions. Among them is osteoporosis, a chronic degenerative disease characterized by a progressive decline in bone structure and frequent bone fractures. Drinking moderately, protects bones and prevents the risk of osteoporosis. The latest knowledge about the composition and biological compounds contained in the beer show that the mineral silicon and phytoestrogen xanthohumol are two key factors for bone health.
Silicon plays an important role in bone formation and maintenance of strength because it improves the quality of the bone matrix, facilitating bone mineralization. In studies conducted in experimental animals and in humans, additional entry silicon resulted in increased bone mineral density and improved strength. Food sources of silicon are beer, whole grains and especially millet. Silicon in a form like silicon dioxide is a common food additive, but has limited intestinal absorption.
In addition to silicon, the other compound that is the bone protector, and contained in the beer is xanthohumol. It is a biologically active compound from the hops that contributes to the bitterness and taste of beer and is known as a strong phytoestrogen. In recent studies, his positive effect on differentiation, maturation and proper development of osteoblasts (bone-producing cells) has been demonstrated. Research is underway to allow this substance to be isolated as a molecule from which new drugs for the treatment of condition such as osteoporosis will be treated.
In order to maximize the benefits of beer in preventing the development of osteoporosis, it is necessary to consume it moderately and responsibly. For women it is the consumption of around 0.33 liters per day, while for men the amount of about 0.65 liters per day of normal lager beer from 4.5 to 5 percent alcohol. In the case of fruit beers, the acceptable quantities are twice as high as it contains half the alcohol. In the case of soft drinks, the daily recommended quantities are almost identical to those recommended for all non-alcoholic drinks of low sugar content (about one liter).