Beer is better than regular painkillers? Studies say it might be true!
Alcohol is often seen in a very negative light. Even when consumed occasionally or socially, it is still considered to be a bad thing. The main reason for this is the extremely negative portrayal of alcoholics in popular mass media as ‘good-for-nothings’. Along with that, people are also aware of the negative effects alcohol has on health. However, according to some recent research it might not be all that bad! According to this study, beer might actually be better than regular painkillers and be more effective than regular over-the-counter medicines!
Researchers from University of Greewich have conducted a research which has yielded results showing that two pints of beer could decrease the pain by up to 25 per cent as compared to paracetamol. Around 18 studies conducted on more than 400 people discovered the pain relieving factor of beer.
Dr Trevor Thompson, the lead researcher of the study, said, “Findings suggest that alcohol is an effective analgesic that delivers clinically-relevant reductions in ratings of pain intensity, which could explain alcohol misuse in those with persistent pain, despite its potential consequences for long-term health.”
He also added that strong evidence was found suggesting that alcohol is highly effective as a painkiller. As a matter of fact it can be compared to opioid drugs like codeine, and the effect is much more powerful than regularly used painkillers such as paracetamol.
Drinking beer in moderate quantity serves two purposes: it elevates the blood alcohol level by 0.08 percent and it also gives body the threshold to bear the pain by lowering the intensity of pain. By elevating the blood alcohol content to approximately 0.08 per cent, the body gets a small elevation of pain threshold and thus a moderate to large reduction in pain intensity ratings. This is how beer might work better than regular painkillers.
However, it is not clear whether alcohol reduces feelings of pain because it affects brain receptors or because it just lowers anxiety, which then makes us think the pain isn’t as bad.
Dr. Thompson further added that if a medicine can be developed which does not have the negative side effects of alcohol, it can be effectively used as a painkiller which is much more potent than the ones available in market today.
Experts however are very vocal in pointing out that just because this studies point out a possible positive effect of alcohol does not mean that alcohol or beer is good for health. They reminded people that drinking too much alcohol can cause problems in the long run.
Government guidelines recommend no more than 14 units of alcohol a week for both men and women, which equates to six pints of beer, or six 175ml glasses of wine.
It should also be remembered that a doctor’s opinion should always be taken while considering substituting a medicine with some other product.
Disclaimer: This article is just for the purpose of information. It should not be considered a substitute for actual medical advice from qualified professionals.
Alcohol consumption can lead to long-term effects on health.