This week, at the National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, researchers will present findings that suggest a key ingredient in beer could be used in the fight against cancer and inflammatory diseases.
Acids called humulones and lupulones, which are found in hops, possess the ability to halt bacterial growth and disease, and scientists hope to find a way to extract these compounds or synthesise them in a lab in order to develop active agents for cancer-treating pharmaceuticals.
But what other little known health benefits are hiding in your pint glass?
2. Beer protects you from heart attacks
A research team at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania found that dark ales and stouts can reduce the incidence of heart attacks.
Atherosclerosis – when artery walls become furred-up with cholesterol and other fatty substances – is known to cause heart problems, but Dr Joe Vinson, a professor of chemistry and lead author on a 2000 study, revealed that beer can cut the risk of this disease by as much as half.
However, the researchers were keen to add that moderation was key.
3. Beer reduces the risk of strokes
Studies by both Harvard Medical School and the American Stroke Association have shown that people who drink moderate amounts of beer can cut their risk of strokes by up to a 50pc, compared to non-drinkers.
Ischaemic strokes are the most common type of stroke. They occur when a blood clot blocks the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain. However, when you drink beer, your arteries become flexible and blood flow improves significantly.
As a result, no blood clots form, and your risk of having a stroke drops exponentially.READ MORE