41234 - Fun Beer Facts

Beer is an amazing thing!  Here are some fun facts about science, health, and history of beer.

  • Go Canada! Researchers at the University of Western Ontario found that micronutrients called polyphenols in one 12-ounce (0.35-liter) bottle of beer create protective levels of plasma antioxidants that can prevent heart disease. 
  • Don't get too excited about the previous point - At three bottles a day, the cardiovascular benefits of beer are reversed by the pro-oxidants your body creates as it metabolizes excess ethanol. 
  • Thousands of litres of beer is lost every year in facial hair ... It would be interesting to see how this stat was established!
  • Beer bubble science:  Thanks to Standford for studying how beer bubbles travel.  They start their rise to the top in the centre of your glass where frictional drag from the glass is less and and then travel down the outside of your glass as the top gets crowded.  Hmmm ... was this study conducted at a university or at a bar?
  • Yeast wasn't actually discovered until 1857 by Louis Pasteur when he was researching fermentation. Previous to that, yeast was sneakily making its way into every brew without the brewer knowing it!
  • Home brewing in the US was illegal from 1919 to 1978.  Imagine the state of the craft beer industry today if this law hadn't been repealed.
  • In 13th centrury some families used beer instead of water to baptize their children.  Pope Gregory IX decreed that these baptisms were invalid so many families went through the baptism ritual a second time.