Does Beer Hurt Your Kidneys?

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Drinking beer may also help protect the kidneys, how?

While heavy drinking can hurt kidneys, moderate drinking may act in opposite way.

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Drinking adequate water every day is the most effective way to prevent kidney problems (including for kidney stones). And some studies found that drinking alcohol in moderation is good for the kidney’s health, too. For instance, alcohol may help prevent kidney stones in this way – though the reason is not fully understood yet!

Kidney stones are solid, hard particles that can block the urinary tract. Many times, these stones are small and don’t cause serious problem. But sometime they can be large enough to cause partial or even complete blockage of urinary tract.

There are several ways of how kidney stones can form in the urinary tract such as from uric acid, magnesium ammonium phosphate, amino acid cystine, or nitrogen compound called xanthine. You can learn more about kidney stones in this section!

Another study, published on the Archives of Internal Medicine, suggests that moderate drinking may help reduce the risk of kidney failure. Among participants in this research, those who drunk in moderation had 30 percent lower risk of getting raised blood creatinine levels (a marker for kidney dysfunction).

But remember that beer also contain purines that can turn into uric acid in the body. If you need to very restrict your dietary purines due to certain condition, you may need to avoid beer (ask your doctor for more advice)!

How to drink beer in moderation?

In general, moderate drinking is not more than 2 drinks a day for men and 1 drink a day for women! Drinking more than 4 drinks a day for men, and 3 drinks a day for women, is categorized heavy drinking.

What is one drink for beer?

One drink can be interpreted in a number of different things, depending on the kind of alcoholic beverages you’re talking about. For beer, 12-ounce bottle of beer is considered as one drink! For wine, it is about one glass (5-ounces) of wine.

It seems that beer is not always harmful as long as you go with light-and-moderate drinking. However again, if you have particular condition that may worsen with alcohol, talk to your doctor for more advice!

Citations /references:

  1. people.cs.pitt.edu/~mehmud/cs134-2084/projects/Team4/health.html
  2. umm.edu/health/medical/reports/articles/kidney-stones
  3. Schaeffner, E.May 9, 2005; vol 165, Archives of Internal Medicine, pp 1048-1053

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