The powerful bone-building ingredient found in beer

Volume 6    |    Issue 73

On Tuesday, I showed you how colostrum from breast milk can help keep your bones strong and flexible. Today, I'm going to show you how beer can do the same thing.

Well, it's not actually beer that keeps your bones healthy. It's an ingredient in beer that works wonders on your bones. And it works so well, researchers are busy trying to brew up new medicines using this ingredient.

Back in 2004, a study came out showing how beer can strengthen bones. The study found that the silicon in beer can help keep your bones strong. I've told you about silicon in the past. But where does the silicon come from?

The silicon comes from hops — the bitter plant that gives beer much of its flavor. Traditional medicine has used hops for centuries to fight inflammation, bacterial infections, and even cancer. And now we know it can keep your bones strong. This is in large part due to the silicon content. But there's more to it.

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Hops also have compounds that act like phytoestrogens. Together, with the silicon, these compounds make hops a very powerful bone builder and protector. Two studies back in 2009 showed just how powerful. One study found that men who drink one to two beers a day had 3.4-4.5% greater hip bone mineral density (BMD). And postmenopausal women who drink more than two drinks per day had even greater hip and spine BMD (5-8.3%). Drinking more than two drinks a day, though, was actually detrimental to the bones of men. It lowered their BMD.

The other study came out of Spain. It followed 1,697 healthy women. Of these, 710 were premenopausal, 176 were perimenopausal, and 811 were postmenopausal. The researchers found that the beer drinkers had significantly better quantitative bone ultrasound values than those who didn't drink beer. And they also were better than the wine drinkers.

The point of all this isn't to get you to drink more beer. In fact, if you're not already drinking beer, you probably won't get enough hops from beer to be therapeutic. It takes regular drinking over many years to see results.

Instead, it's better to get your hops in supplement form. You can get more of its benefits in this concentrated form. For instance, Ultimate Bone Support has 300 mg of hops, along with many other bone-boosting nutrients. Most beers have only 15 mg to 42 mg of hops (Indian Pale Ales typically have the most). So you would have to drink 7-20 beers a day to get the hops included in this formula. No one needs to drink this much — not only would it be bad for your liver and overall health, it would actually destroy your bones.

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About Steve Kroening, ND

For over 25 years, Editor-In-Chief Steve Kroening has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Frank Shallenberger, Janet Zand, Nan Kathryn Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.

Steve researches breakthrough cures and treatments you won't hear about from mainstream medicine or even other "alternative" writers. He writes in a friendly, easy-to-read style that always gives you the power to guide your own health choices and do more research on your own.