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8 Reasons Runners Should Totally Have A Beer Tonight

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Go ahead and crack open that beer. We just got proof that drinking a brew or two is actually beneficial to your health—and won’t damper your running game.

Beer lovers can rejoice and casual beer drinkers don’t have to feel guilty for sipping on one every now and then. Studies show that consuming beer in moderation—one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men—can prevent disease, while also boosting your running speed.

Not sold yet? Here are eight other reasons to start pouring.

Cold Prevention

In 2009, Dr. Johannes Scherr led a study with 277 contestants three weeks before and two weeks after the Munich Marathon. This became known as the “Be-MaGIC,” (beer, marathons, genetics, inflammation and the cardiovascular system) study, which explored the connection between polyphenol in beer and a runner’s health.

Two groups were created—the beer drinkers and the non-beer drinkers. The first group drank 1.5 liters of non-alcoholic wheat beer daily, while group two drank a substance that smelled and tasted like wheat beer but did not have polyphenols. Polyphenols have been found to help reduce inflammation and alleviate stress placed on the body; these things can prevent illnesses like colds and viruses.

The study found that group one had fewer colds and viruses, as well as less inflammation. Those who did have a cold from group one did not have it as long as those in group two. So make sure the beer is rich in polyphenols to support the body’s immune system.

Keep Your Ticker Ticking

You’ve probably heard a glass of red wine a day can provide the antioxidants your body needs to prevent heart disease. Well, same is true with beer. Studies suggest that the benefits of wine versus beer and spirits suggest that moderate consumption of any alcoholic drink can help to lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. But too much can also increase your chances of heart disease. So it’s best to stick to one a day to maximize your benefits.

More Protein, Please

Nutritionists say that beer contains more protein and B vitamins than wine. While wine provides plenty of antioxidants, beer provides something different due to the barely and hops—which helps keep your muscles from deteriorating. For runners, flavonoids help increase the absorbance capacity of antioxidants in the blood, which helps the body to rid free radicals effectively and efficiently. This helps the body recover more quickly.

Brain Protection

According to a 2007 study from the University of Alcala in Spain, one to two cold ones a day could help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. The research suggests the high levels of silicon found in beer can reduce the aluminum in the digestive tract, which can slow the accumulation of metal in the body and brain. Moderate levels of beer consumed (silicon) can be a protector to the brain, preventing Alzheimer’s disease.

Stress Reliever

Whether your body is tight from a long run or rough day at the office, a cold beer can help relax the body, reducing tension and stiffness. This can help alleviate that pesky soreness as well.

Portion Control Made Easy

You know how many calories are in one can or bottle of beer; at least it’s easy to control what calories you take in from one.

Promotes Better Sleep

Lactoflavin and nicotinic acid are both found in beer, which can help boost sleep! Consider your sleep deprivation cured.

Plant-Based Diet

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Enough said.

Bottom line, one or two beers won’t ruin your training routine. Beer can help you recovery better and prevent diseases. However, it’s important to always drink responsibly and supplement with water. Everything in moderation is key.

Fara Rosenzweig

Fara Rosenzweig

Fara Rosenzweig is a writer, editor, and certified personal trainer. She got her first taste of the gym at age 14 and fell in love with the fitness crowd. After suffering a back injury her freshman year of college, she had to set her ballet slippers aside and rehab her back. That’s when she found her passion for teaching fitness and helping others challenge themselves. Her senior year of college she ran in her first 5K and traded her ballet slippers for the latest (and brightest) pair of running shoes. Fara loves talking health, sports and fitness with any one and everyone. Her love for storytelling earned her an Emmy Award and has been seen in many other publications, such as Refinery29, Active.com, MyFitnessPal and Health.