7th November was National Stout Day!
While drinking too much can have detrimental effects on your health, as it was National Stout Day this month, we thought we’d take a look at the benefits of stout when this drink is enjoyed responsibly.
Yes, that’s right! And although they’re in all beers, stout contains nearly twice the amount of antioxidants found in light-coloured lagers. Stout is packed with flavonoids, the antioxidants that give fruit and vegetables their dark colour.
Antioxidants are molecules that neutralise free radicals – unstable molecules that can harm your cells. We usually find them in foods such as raspberries, kale and artichokes – amidst many other fruits, vegetables and nuts. The health benefits associated with a diet packed with plants are at least partially due to the variety of antioxidants they provide your body!
Getting enough antioxidants in your system is great for your heart. Slowing down the deposit of cholesterol on artery walls, this can help reduce blood clots and the risk of heart attacks.
Taking Guinness as an example, one pint is one per cent calcium, which can boost bone health. A study in 2009 found drinking beer in moderation can help improve bone mineral density, which is a large risk factor in osteoporosis. On top of building bones and keeping them healthy, calcium enables our blood to clot, our muscles to contract and our hearts to keep beating!
According to an article from the Institute of Brewing, a pint of Guinness is full of nutrients, including all the B vitamins, except B12. Vitamins play a vital role in helping our bodies convert food into fuel. Three pints of stout will give you roughly the equivalent of a single yolk egg and contain 3% of an adult’s recommended daily dose of iron, which can help boost your energy levels if you’re feeling a bit sluggish.
Although we don’t initially think of beer as a lighter option, stout is around 50 calories less than other beers – even with the average 8% abv!
Taking a whopping 119.53 seconds (on average) to pour perfectly, it will definitely be worth the wait! If you’re a little more impatient you may want to try stout with sparkling wine. Yes, we’re serious. Commonly known as a “Black Velvet”, the drink was first concocted by the bartender of Brooks’s Club in London in 1861, to mourn the death of Prince Albert. Achieved with a champagne flute of sparkling wine, topped with flat stout to give it the dark, eerie look.
Although we’ve discussed the benefits of stout, we strongly advise being sensible and drinking in moderation. To keep health risks to a low level if you drink on a regular basis, men and women are advised to not routinely drink more than 14 units a week.