Insight & Analysis

Got a headache? Grab a beer

Published: May 2017

Research proves that beer is a more effective pain relief than traditional painkillers.

In news that will please beer drinkers the world over, there is a now a scientific reason to drink the popular alcoholic beverage: it is an ultra-effective pain relief.

Studies conducted by Dr Trevor Thompson at London’s Greenwich University found that drinking two beers is more effective at relieving pain than taking painkillers, cutting discomfort by sometimes as much as a quarter.

The reason for this, according to the study, is that by raising blood alcohol content to approximately 0.08% the body receives “a small elevation of pain threshold”. This, in turn, leads to a “moderate to large reduction in pain intensity ratings,” according to Thompson.

That being said, just because alcohol can relieve pain, it doesn’t mean that drinking it in large quantities is good for us.

Thompson told UK tabloid, The Sun, that: “[Alcohol] can be compared to opioid drugs such as codeine and the effect is more powerful than paracetamol. If we can make a drug without the harmful side-effects then we could have something that is potentially better than what is out there at the moment.”

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