| Beer and belly. Photo: Paul Keleher, Flickr
After tracking 7,876 men and 12,749 women over the course of eight and a half years, a group of German and Swedish researchers discovered that while regular drinkers -- especially those who consumed the equivalent of two pints a day -- were more likely to gain weight overall, that weight did not necessarily accumulate in the abdominal region. The scientists concluded that while "beer consumption seems to be rather associated with an increase in overall body fatness," evidence of more "site-specific" weight gain was limited. Somewhat unsurprisingly, given its pivotal role in most weighty matters, genetics was the real culprit.
The news couldn't have come at a better time, i.e summer, when hot days call out for cold brews and beer aficionados seek sweet relief in air-conditioned bars across the country. It's possibly the best news since, oh, last week, when New York City declared July Good Beer Month, and will doubtless inspire countless toasts made over frosty mugs held high.