Ghana: Ask God How Much to Drink … Why Beer Is Nutritious? (2)

This is the concluding part of the article published on June 15, 2021 issue of the paper.

Increased risk of death- Two studies (Plunk et al. 2014;Westman et al. 2015) found that heavy and binge drinkers have a higher risk of early death than moderate drinkers and nondrinkers.

– Alcohol dependence- Becker (2008) found that frequent alcohol consumption can lead to dependence and alcohol use disorder.

– Increased risk of depression- (Moberg and Curtin, 2009; Cheng et al. 2012) studies suggest that heavy and binge drinkers have a significant-ly higher risk of depression com-pared with moderate drinkers and nondrinkers.

– Liver disease- Two studies (Bruha et al. 2012; Mathurin and Bataller, 2015) study is of the view that drinking more than 30 grams of alcohol — found in two to three 12-ounce or 355-mL bottles of beer – – daily can raise your risk of liver diseases like cirrhosis, a condition characterized by scarring.

– Weight gain. A standard 12-ounce (355-mL) beer contains around 153 calories, so consuming multiple drinks can contribute to weight gain according to the US Department-ment of Agriculture(nd)

– Cancers- Three studies (Connor, 2017; Betts et al. 2018; Choi et al. 2018) found that any alcohol intake has an increased risk of cancers, including throat and mouth cancers.

HOW MUCH TO DRINK?

How much to drink is a subject of interest. Many Christian advocate of drinking alcoholic wine point to a verse in 1 Timothy. Paul says, “Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thin often infirmities” (1 Tim 5:23).

Paul did not clarify what a little means. Probable, Paul left this open to the scientific community to justi-fy. Besides, the type of wine was also not justified by Paul.

But whatever kind of wine Paul was talking about (fermented or unfermented), it is exceedingly plain that the purpose of his counsel to Timothy was due to his stomach ailments.

Paul’s counsel related to a medicinal-nal use, not a social enjoyment. What kind of wine was Paul recommend-ing? Would the apostle encourage the moderate use of a drink which Proverbs 23:31 says “Look not upon the wine when it is red,” a drink which brings “woe sorrow, babbling, and wounds” (Proverbs 23:29).

A drink which is deceptive (Proverbs 20:1), a drink which perverts the judgment causing tine eyes to behold strange women and thin heart to utter strange things (Proverbs 23:32-33).

The Bible uses the word wine to refer to both an alcoholic fermented beverage as well as unfermented grape juice. Accord-ing to Isaiah 65:8, the new wine is found in a cluster and there is blessing in it.

This is obviously the unfer-mented, freshly squeezed juice of the grape. Referring to the communion wine served, Jesus told His disciples that He would not participate in the service again until He “drank it new with them in the Father’s kingdom” (Matt. 26:29).

It is clear that the Bible talks about a little and some instances refer to what binge drinking could have on the body. In John 10:10 in part says, “… I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” God says, in engaging in binge al-cohol we participate in destroying not only our own life but often the lives of others.

Also, in 1 Corinthians 10:31: “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” It is impos-sible to engage in binge alcohol to the glory of God. Moving away from the Bible, the Center for Dis-ease Control(CDC) notes that to reduce the risk of negative health consequences, it’s best to limit your intake to no more than one standard drink per day for women and two for men.

THE CDC FURTHER EXPLAINED THAT:

Binge drinking, is the most common form of excessive drinking-ing, is defined as consuming:

– For women, 4 or more drinks during a single occasion.

– For men, 5 or more drinks during a single occasion.

– Heavy drinking is defined as consuming

– For women, 8 or more drinks per week.

– For men, 15 or more drinks per week.

According to niaaa.nih.gov: in the United States, a standard drink contains approximately 14 grams of pure alcohol, which is the amount typically found in 12 ounces (355 mL) of regular beer, 5 ounces (150 mL) of wine, or 1.5 ounces (45 mL) of spirit.

IS BEER GOOD ‘FOR YOU?

From Biblical perspective, Paul’s counsel to Timothy was related to a medicinal use, not a social enjoyment. Departing from the Bible to the scientific community, the health effects of drinking beer are mixed.

Though small amounts may be associated with bene-fits, heavy or binge drinking is associated with negative health effects. These include an increased risk of alcohol use disorder, depression, liver disease, weight gain, cancers, and death.

Keep in mind that even though drinking alcohol may offer some benefits, you can achieve the same positive effects by enjoying a varied nu-trient-rich diet of whole foods like fruits and vegetables. In fact, a recent health article on CNN.com states in part,

“The latest studies show you can get all the same benefits from grape juice as you can from wine. The reason purple grape juice contains the same powerful disease-fighting anti-oxidants, called flavonoids, that are believed to give wine many of its heart -friendly benefits. The flavonoids in grape juice, like those in wine, have been shown to pre-vent the oxidation of so called bad cholesterol LDLs, or low density lipoproteins that leads to forma-tion of plaque in artery walls”.

Compared with standard beer, light beer contains a similar amount of vitamins and minerals but slightly fewer calories and less alcohol. This makes light beer a better option if you’re deciding between the two.

On a final note, some people wonder if drinking beer after a workout can aid their recovery.

BEER AS A SPORTS DRINK?

I have encountered many people on the Ayi Mensah road engaging in alcoholic beverages immedi-ately after their exercise. Is there science?

Three studies are mixed (Des-brow et al. 2013; Parr et al.2014; Steiner and Lang, 2015) demon-strate that drinking a low alcohol beer with electrolytes can improve rehydration, other studies have shown that alcohol can hinder muscle growth and recovery. However, it’s more effective to rehydrate by drinking nonalcoholic electrolyte beverages.

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