Spanish researchers have concluded that beer in moderation is actually good for you, especially if you suffer from high blood pressure.
The team found that the drink, which is low in salt, can be included as part of a low-salt diet for those who need to lower their blood pressure.
Beer is high in potassium, an essential nutrient for hypertension sufferers, and for female beer drinkers it increases ‘good’ cholesterol, known as HDL-c.
But moderation is key. This is considered to be between one and two cañas (half-pints) a day for women or a pint/pint and a half (two to three cañas) for men.
Dr José Antonio García Donaire from the Blood Pressure Unit at Madrid’s Hospital Clínico San Carlos says that nearly 14 million people in Spain suffer from high blood pressure but an estimated 14 per cent are unaware of the fact.
Dr Donaire also says that healthy eating –particularly following a typical ‘Mediterranean diet’, low in salt and red meat – along with physical activity, are the best ways to reduce blood pressure.
Dr Donaire asserts that ‘fermented drinks’ such as beer, cider or wine in small quantities, consumed with meals, will do no harm and in some cases may even help.