Post Workout Beer - Does a Body Good

Todays questions were a perfect way to introduce our new Friday Q and A. Keep them coming and we’ll do our best to answer them.


Question: Is beer really a good post workout beverage?

Jeremy Miller, Steamboat, Colorado

Post Workout BeerAnswer: Believe it or not scientists say a beer after a strenuous workout can be good for the body. Beer has been shown in studies to rehydrate better than water can. The carbonation in beer helps quench thirst while the carbohydrate content helps to replenish calories burnt while working out.

My strength and conditioning mentor used to train a guy who drank a considerable amount of beer- mostly post workout. Acknowledging that he was maybe drinking a little too much they gradually tried to ease back his beer intake and noticed that he had more and more trouble recovering from workouts. He was even experiencing delayed onset muscle soreness more often than he used to.

They eventually made the connection that a large part of his calorie and carbohydrate intake he’d been getting from beer post workout was no longer going into his muscles and was hindering his recovery. As a result he needed to re-introduce good foods to make up the missing calories and replenish his energy stores.

A cardiologist who has worked with professional basketball teams suggests that beer has the perfect post workout make up, adding that he has long recommended the use of barley drinks to professional athletes following exercise.

Another study demonstrated when 2 groups of athletes were put through the same rigorous workout and half were given water and half beer, those who drank brewskis re-hydrated better.

While some argue beer has such a powerful diuretic effect due to the alcohol drinking only one after a workout doesn’t contain enough to cause any notable water loss.

Regardless, it always comes back to moderation. Having a beer after a good hard workout is beneficial and not a problem. 3 or 4- you’d be over doing it. Just to play it safe be sure to follow up with a glass of water!
 

Question: What’s the difference between white and brown rice?

Albert Yew, Wichita, Kansas

white rice vs brown riceAnswer: Both brown and white rice have very similar calorie contents at 4 calories per gram. The main difference lies in the processing and nutrient content.

White rice has the husk bran and germ removed leaving nothing but the starchy center. In the refining process several vitamins and minerals are lost such as b vitamins and iron.

And losing the bran isn’t that great since it has been shown to reduce LDL or bad cholesterol in blood- improving cardiovascular health.

Sometimes these nutrients are re-added to highly processed white rice but it’s never quite as good as the real thing. A very important mineral usually not added back to refined rice is magnesium which is essential in muscle relaxation. (Quick side tip: If you ever experience muscle spams or cramps, first check that your hydration levels are up to par and secondly your magnesium intake)

It is tough to argue against white rice considering over half the world lives on it but much like any grain- the more you strip it down and refine it the less nutrition it will yield.

So, sure you can live on white rice as it provides the same amount of energy as brown rice but you certainly won’t thrive on it because you’ll be losing out on all the b-vitamins, iron, magnesium, trace fatty acids and fiber.

Go for brown if you have the option.



Albert and Jeremy, thanks for some great questions and as always keep them coming.

Stay Strong,

Drew

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