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Which Is Better – Beer Or Wine???

Health, Resources

Which Is Better – Beer Or Wine???

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Q.  Which is better a beer or wine?

A.  Some questions in nutrition have no clear-cut answer, and this is one of them. While alcohol is a poison in the body, small amounts of red Wine have been shown to reduce cardiovascular risk [1], albeit probably because of the anthocyanidins found in the grapes, not the alcohol. Women who drink alcohol every day, however, have an increased risk of breast cancer [2]. One of the best measures of health is a person’s level of the amino acid homocysteine. The higher your homocysteine score, the greater the risk of disease. Both beer and wine in moderation has been shown to very slightly lower homocysteine [3]. Both are fermented drinks and it is thought that it’s the B vitamins in the yeast and to some extent the grapes that have this beneficial effect. Overall, I’d vote for organic red wine in moderation, meaning four glasses a week maximum, especially for women. Women with low folic acid intake are more susceptible to the negative effects of alcohol as regards the breast cancer risk [4]. Therefore, if you do drink wine on a regular basis, make sure you eat plenty of green vegetables or take a multivitamin or ideally both.

References:

[1] Lippi G, Franchini M, Favaloro EJ, Targher G. Moderate red wine consumption and cardiovascular disease risk: beyond the "French paradox". PMID: 20391297.

[2] Willett WC, Stampfer MJ, Colditz GA, Rosner BA, Hennekens CH, Speizer FE. Moderate alcohol consumption and the risk of breast cancer. PMID: 3574368.

[3] Kim EC, Kim JS, Jung JG, Kim SS, Yoon SJ, Ryu JS. Effect of alcohol consumption on risk of hyperhomocysteinemia based on alcohol-related facial flushing response. PMID: 23904954.

[4] Laura Baglietto, senior research fellow, Dallas R English, associate director, [...], and Graham G Giles, director. Does dietary folate intake modify effect of alcohol consumption on breast cancer risk? Prospective cohort study. PMCID: PMC1246078.

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