What effect does beer have on cholesterol levels?


Question:My latest blood sample showed, once again, that my cholesterol is too high. That is, the HDL to LDL is very bad, besides which my triglycerides count is much too high. Hence my question: the doctor tells me to go easy with the beers because of the residual sugars they contain, and because they are converted into fats. And it just so happens that I’m a devout beer-drinker. I’ve heard it said that old geuzes and trappist beers by Orval do not contain any residual sugars. Is that true, and are there other beers that don’t contain any residual sugars?

Answer: It is a scientifically established fact that moderate beer-drinking has a beneficial effect on the cholesterol level. The “good” HDL cholesterol goes up as the “bad ”LDL cholesterol goes down. The answer to your question therefore implies either that you drink too much beer, or that your doctor is not as familiar as he or she might be with the results of more recent scientific research. Your eating habits and lifestyle can also have a great impact on cholesterol level.

Most traditional beers contain residual sugars to a greater or lesser degree. In an effort to avoid this, beers have been placed on the market in recent years in which the residual sugars are almost completely removed. Special brewing techniques and the addition of enzymes ensure that the residual sugars are almost completely fermented off. These beers are now on sale in the big chain stores and in biological shops.



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