By Matt Shaw

Disclaimer: The good folks at Pulse would like to remind you that while beer has its distinct health benefits, those benefits only apply when drinking beer in moderation. Habitually drinking to excess can cause severe long-term brain, heart, liver and kidney damage, and will make you look like a total jackass in front of that hottie in your sociology class. And please don’t make us remind you not to drink and drive…

Beer, as the adage goes, is good for the soul. But did you know it’s also good for a variety of other things? Beyond its intrinsic value as social lubricant, studies have shown that a little (again, little) of the liquid courage can actually improve your health and help fight off little nasties like prostate cancer and Alzheimer’s. Consider the following a prescription. Take as directed.

Unibroue La Fin Du Monde

Yeast is loaded with B-complex vitamins (which, ironically, are proven hangover-fighters), protein, and Chromium. In combination, these nutrients help a variety of processes, from the regulation of blood sugar and the digestive system to nervous system maintenance. La Fin Du Monde is a bottle-conditioned (yeast-in-the-bottle) Belgian tripel loaded with tropical fruit and spice notes. It may be the best thing to come out of Canada since bacon, and without all the cholesterol. At 9%, you’re best taking one with a starchy, carb-heavy dinner.

Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA

Hops contain compounds called polyphenols, which have been found to lower cholesterol, fight cancer, and kill viruses. According to research done at Jerusalem’s Hebrew University, one 12-oz. beer a day helps lower the clotting factor fibrinogen and increase albumin, which is important for protein metabolism. Dogfish Head infuses 90 Minute IPA with a continuous addition of hops over the course of ~ you guessed it ~ 90 minutes. The result is a 90 IBU (in other words, wicked hoppy), 9% ABV beverage worth savoring from a small snifter. Twice the hops, almost twice the alcohol: take one nightly, and consume slowly.

Mayflower Porter

When grains are roasted prior to brewing, they produce all kinds of wonderful caramel and roasted flavors. What’s more, during the roasting process, they also produce boatloads of antioxidants. A 2003 study at the University of Scranton showed that the average porter contains twice the amount of antioxidants as the average lager, and that the antioxidants in porters fight free radicals better than antioxidants in vitamin pills. Mayflower’s award-winning Porter, a smooth, malty masterpiece brewed in Portsmouth, fits the bill quite nicely. Take two with football. (And go easy on the wings, huh?)