Men's Health (UK) - - 7/17 Your Summer Starts Here -

The right brew can put a dam­per on your work­week wor­ries. Camomile it ain’t

After a long day spent pla­cat­ing un­rea­son­able clients and deal­ing with the in­ter­minable task of ‘life ad­min’, switch­ing off in the evening can feel like one job too many. If only there were an elixir that could drown out the noise, it would be wel­come in­deed.

Well, in news that will please any man whose idea of fun is a lit­tle saucier than kick­ing back with a cuppa, it tran­spires a craft IPA can get the job done just as well as any mug of chamomile.

Now, if you’re think­ing that down­ing a pint of the mahogany nec­tar to quiet your nerves is hardly a novel strat­egy, it’s worth point­ing out that th­ese ef­fects are not at­trib­uted to in­tox­i­ca­tion. In a study by the Univer­sity of Ex­tremadura in Spain, stressed shift work­ers were given 330ml of non-al­co­holic beer ev­ery evening for a fort­night. As well as re­port­ing sig­nif­i­cant de­creases in anx­i­ety, the study group also noted im­proved sleep qual­ity.

The sci­en­tists con­cluded that the hops in beer raise lev­els of the ‘in­hibitory’ brain chem­i­cal GABA, a de­fi­ciency of which can lead you to feel over­whelmed, anx­ious and dis­tracted. In short, it gives your cog­ni­tive en­gine a cool­ing-off pe­riod. Of course, no post-work beer is com­plete without an ac­com­pa­ny­ing bar snack, in which case we would ad­vo­cate the cus­tom­ary bag of salted nuts. Cashews, in par­tic­u­lar, are rich in mag­ne­sium, which will fur­ther lift your lev­els of calm­ing neu­ro­chem­i­cals.

Ad­mit­tedly, you won’t de­velop the abil­ity to talk the hind legs off a don­key, as a few pints of pre­mium strength are wont to give you. But no mat­ter – you’ll still ben­e­fit from the gift of the GABA.

QUES­TION What com­fort­ing brew can help you sink mid­week anx­i­ety? AN­SWER Beer

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