EXAMINATION OF BEER UNDER THE ASPECT OF ITS ELIGIBILITY AS FITNESS DRINK
K. Krennhuber, P. Kuttner, A. Jäger - EXAMINATION OF BEER UNDER THE ASPECT OF ITS ELIGIBILITY AS FITNESS DRINK in International Journal of Food and Biosystems Engineering (Editors: Dr. K. Petrotos, Dr. A. Filintas), 2015
During longer physical strains our body loses water and salts through sweating. The deprivation leads to states of exhaustion and convulsions. A fitness drink should replenish both, water and mineral nutrients (mainly sodium). Different beers, alcoholic, alcohol free and yeast-clouded, alcohol free beer were analyzed with HPLC and Ion chromatography to determine the content of mineral nutrients and carbohydrates. Osmolality as a degree of tonicity was calculated based on the dissolved components. Data was compared to three fitness drinks declared as mineral nutrient containing and isotonic. Subsequently different sodium salts were added to alcohol free, yeast-clouded beer to reach the recommended sodium concentrations of 500 mg L-1. These spiked beers were tested blind for flavor impairments. This study shows that just two of the fitness drinks came even close to fulfilling the EU direction. Generally almost all beers are mineral nutrient containing, as defined by Austrian law. Due to the alcohol concentration none of alcoholic beers are isotonic, as they are hypertonic. Most of the yeast clouded, alcohol free beers are within the isotonic range. Each beer fulfills the EU recommended carbohydrate content but none comes even close to fulfilling the sodium content. The blind tasting of the spiked beers showed minor flavor impairment with sodium carbonate as the salt causing the least negative effects on taste and odor. In conclusion yeast clouded, alcohol free beer might be labeled as mineral nutrient containing and isotonic, implying to be an ideal sport drink. Due to the lack of sodium the real benefit of such a beverage could diminish unless mixed with beverage containing high levels of sodium or sodium carbonate.