Got a Cold? Have a Beer!

Drinking beer is good for you and your children, a study by Japan's oldest brewer says.

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Image: A man walks past a poster of Sapporo Holdings' beer at the company's lobby in Tokyo February 16, 2011.
Yuriko Nakao / REUTERS

A man walks past a poster of Sapporo Holdings' beer at the company's lobby in Tokyo February 16, 2011.

Drinking beer is good for you and your children, a study by Japan’s oldest brewery says.

Hops, one of the three basic ingredients of beer along with water and barley, contains a chemical compound called humulone, which can help the human body fight the virus that causes the common cold in adults, according to a report by the news agency Agence-France Presse. The same virus also can cause bronchitis and pneumonia in children. With vaccination for these illnesses has yet to be found, the study by Japanese beverage giant Sapporo says that beer could prove a unique way of curbing infection.

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Unfortunately, a single can of beer doesn’t contain enough humulone to make a difference, Jun Fuchimoto, a researcher for Sapporo, told AFP. You’d need to drink 30 12-oz. cans of beer in order for there to be any effect — about 4,500 calories‘ worth and enough alcohol to make a cold the least of your worries. Sapporo is looking into adding humulone to food and non-alcoholic drinks as well, Fuchimoto said. But don’t forsake the other health benefits beer can have in more reasonable amounts: It’s been shown to increase bone density and reduce risk of heart disease, Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia. Protein in hops will even make your hair and skin shinier.

MORE: Happy Oktoberfest! Tapping into the Health Benefits of Beer

5 comments
Rhurazz12
Rhurazz12

You see who said the beer isnt good for the body as well the soul? What were people smoking when they heard that BS about it being poison and the devil's drink? Time for a beer!!

KatherineWolfe
KatherineWolfe

I wonder how many of those nutty triple-hopped ipas it would take to have enough hops?  There isn't a whole lot of hops in Japanese beer.

AndrewK777
AndrewK777

A Japanese brewery is telling you beer is good for you? Funny, but that reminds me of when the cigarette companies were telling me that cigarettes were actually good for my health.

ciendolor
ciendolor

An old German folk remedy for colds is to drink warm beer, particularly in Bavaria, where they drink it a liter (app. one quart) at a time.  You heat it up so just over body temp.  Pretty tough, huh?  Not sure it works, but hey!  Any excuse to imbibe on the national drink.

BorisIII
BorisIII

I spent several years drinking everyday with true alcoholics and wondered if it was because of beer.  Except we thought the alcohol was cleaning are systems.