- Beer is a major source of silicon. Silicon may help bone formation.
- While drinking moderate amounts of any type of alcohol can help the bones, beer and wine seem to have the most benefit.
- Too much alcohol (more than 1 to 2 drinks a day) can make the bones weaker. A drink is generally defined as: 5 ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, 1 ½ ounces of liquor.
- Drinking too much also increases the likelihood of falling – increasing your chances of breaking a bone!
- There’s no daily recommendation for silicon but the average intake is about 20-50 mg.
- A recent study looked at how much silicon is in various types of beer. It ranged from 6 mg up to 56 mg. Ales, lagers, and IPA’s were the highest with IPA’s the highest of all. Why the difference among the brews? The more malt and hops, the more silicon. Wheat based beers are much lower in silicon since the silicon is higher in barley and hops.
As for me, I may have to do some personal research on this intriguing topic. Now which bar, I mean laboratory, should I use for my experiments?
Beth Kitchin MS RD
Assistant Professor of Nutrition Sciences
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Tucker KL, Jugdaohsingh R, Powell JJ, Qiao N, Hannan MT, Sripanyakorn S, Cupples LA, Kiel DP. Effects of beer, wine, and liquor intakes on bone mineral density in older men and women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009;89:1188096.
Casey TR, Bamforth CW. Silicon in beer and brewing. J Sci Food Agric. 2010;90:784-788.