One minor quibble about the latest thing-that-used-to-be-thought-of-as-bad-for-you is actually good for you report. Since I can’t find the abstract online, the following quote will have to do:
A pint of the black stuff a day may work as well as an aspirin to prevent heart clots that raise the risk of heart attacks.
Drinking lager does not yield the same benefits, experts from University of Wisconsin told a conference in the US.
So, they compared a pint of guinness to a pint of lager. First off, that’s already misleading because goodness knows what sort of effect lager has compared to say, water, or wine, or tea. Well, maybe somebody does know; I’m just too lazy to do the citation search right now. But to give them credit where it’s due, people are probably more interested in knowing the comparison in health benefits of the category of drink (although you’ll be hard pressed to find someone who swings between lagers and stouts that often).
Thinking some more1, it occurred to me that Guinness has an alcohol composition of anywhere from 4% to 7.5%, and lager, depending on brand, has the same range of alcohol content. Alcohol has known blood “thinning” effects. For the study to have been well-controlled, they would hopefully have used two drinks with the same alcohol content.
On the back of that, curiosity about sugar content (or calorie count) entered my mind, which led me to debunk my lifelong prejudice against Guinness. There’s very little difference in caloric content between Guinness and say, an American Budweiser2 of the same volume. If anything, draught Guinness has fewer calories than Budweiser per volume. The prevailing thought throughout Uni years was that a pint of Guinness was the equivalent of a Mars bar at nearly 300 kcal per regular sized bar. Turns out it’s only just over half of that at 170 kcal/pint.
Quibbles about the research aside, this report at least opened my eyes to one of my ill-conceived objections to Guinness. Now, if only they could do something about that nasty taste…
1 Yes, I’m work-avoiding again.
2 Not that I admit to drinking that insipid excuse for a beer.