It’s been a long week and you go to grab a drink to sit back and relax with.

You’re faced with two options: a bottle of wine, or a bottle of beer and are trying to decide which one is a better option to support your healthy lifestyle…

In an epic battle of ‘beer vs wine’, can you guess which beverage is healthier?


Beer Pros

1. In Germany, hops has been approved by the government to treat restlessness, anxiety, and sleeping disorders

2. The protein, fiber, B vitamin, folate and niacin content in beer are higher than its winey competition (12 oz bottle of beer contains up to 12.5 percent of recommended requirement of vitamin B6!)

3. The hoppier the beer, the more it’s been proven to increase bone mineral density and bone matrix quality (says a study in the Journal of Clinical Nutrition) due to its high levels of silicon

4. Beer drinkers are said to have a 41% less chance of developing kidney stones

5. The sugar in your favorite beer is theorized to block harmful cancer-causing carcinogens in the body

Beer Cons

1. Craft beers can near 300 calories in one bottle

2. Over-consumption of beer can cause addiction, hangovers, and liver damage

3. Heavy beer drinking contributes to the dreaded ‘beer belly’

4. Gastric acid secreting stimulants can cause heartburn

Beer summary

The process of making beer involved the fermentation of sprouted (malted) barley and the hops, which give beer its distinctive flavor. Contrary to popular belief, stout is not a good source of iron in and of itself, but it does assist with better absorption of iron from food when drank with a meal.

A study done in Australia linked moderate beer drinkers (in comparison to non-drinkers) to a 20 percent lower chance of dying from heart disease.

Although beer doesn’t get as much publicity for its antioxidant content, it actually contains two well-known antioxidants: phenolics and melanoidins.

Beer fun fact: It is believed by some anthropologists that our obsession with beer may have planted the seeds of agriculture, and could have been the beginning of civilization itself!

wine vs beer_2Wine Pros

1. On average, a 5oz glass of wine has only 125 calories

2. In addition to containing a significant amount of fiber, one glass of red wine contains 4 percent of your daily value of potassium

3. One of the main nutrients in red wine, resveratrol, was found to blunt the effects of aging when taken in small dosages according to studies

4. Healthy antioxidants called ‘flavanoids’ may play a part in protecting the skin from harmful UV rays, says a Spanish study

Wine Cons

1. The acidic nature of wine may demineralize teeth over time

2. Research suggests that migraines can be triggered by drinking red wine

3. Conditions and diseases such as heart disease, obesity, diabetes and kidney disease are associated with elevated triglyceride levels that can be elevated with over-excessive wine-consumption

4. Wine, too, can be contributed to hangovers, addiction, and liver damage over time

Wine summary

Not all wines are created equal, but all wines do contain small amounts of vitamins and minerals (but less than beer).

Red wine in particular contains more potassium, iron, and phenolics, although the concentration of phenolics can vary depending on types of grapes and the location they were grown.

Pinot Noir grapes have the highest levels of the phenolic resveratrol, and all red wine is known for having a higher content of antioxidants than it’s white counter-part. It is theorized that resveratrol may play a part in boosting the body’s clot dissolving enzyme, which could help prevent heart attack and/or stroke.

Watch out for wines containing less than 7% alcohol as they may have more sugar content than many beers.

Wine Fun Fact: Next time you sip a glass of wine, pay homage to the ancient monks!

Thanks to their creativity and expressive experimentation processes, we get to appreciate a wide variety of wine choices today. In fact, the well-known champagne ‘Dom Perignon’ was named after a monk that was an early advocate and connoisseur of organic wine-making!

wine vs beer_3Battle of the boozes

Now that we have the facts, what is the verdict? Can a pint of beer possibly outweigh the well-known benefits of a glass of wine?

Well… Yes and no.

Research concludes that wine and beer both are evidenced to be beneficial to health in moderation.

The catch is the type of wine and beer that is chosen. Red wine trumps white wine for the win (the redder the better!), and beers with lower calorie and sugar content trump those with a higher energy content.

Additionally, choosing a beverage without sulfites and added chemicals also makes a difference on the health scale (don’t panic, it’s organic!). For those with gluten intolerances, a gluten free beer would be healthier than its gluten-laden sister wines.

Choose the beverage of your choice, but be cognizant of the type, the nutrition facts, and the amount being consumed.

In moderation, beer and wine have comparable health benefits. But remember – they are not all created equal. May your red wine be divine (but not too sweet) and your beer be hoppy (but low in calories)! Cheers to better boozing!

Connect with Expert Emma Pietrzak

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