The good news: beer bellys are a myth. The bad news: you're going to get liver disease

The good news: beer bellys are a myth. The bad news: you're going to get liver disease

CultureJune 13, 2013

Men and women everywhere rejoice over the fact that you're not fat because you drink, you're fat because you're lazy. Scientists have once again justified our reasons for drinking with new research that shows beer bellys are only a humorous way of saying you're a lazy bastard who likes to drink. 

According to Professor Charles Bamforth from the University of California Davis where he studies and teaches food technology and science, the beer belly isn't what most people consider it to be.  

“There’s nothing magical about the alcohol in beer, it’s just alcohol,” says Bamforth. “The beer belly is a complete myth.” 

That's as good enough a reason as any to continue our current two-week binger. 

Before science showed us otherwise, original fat-drinker theorists believed that because beer was consumed in such large quantities compared to wine and hard liquor, the calories of the actual beer ingredients are what lead to being overweight. 

But Bamforth has a dose of reality that's not going to sit well on that stump of your belly. He argues that almost all of the calories in these beverages comes from the alcohol alone. By these measurements, reasoning might suggest wine and hard alcohol would have more obese drinkers than beer because of their higher alcohol contents yet that's not the case.   

Bamforth believes it might be a lifestyle factor. Those who drink beer regularly, he says, often tend to also enjoy high-fat meats in the form of a hamburger or sausage.

Who would have though sitting on the couch, drinking beer and scratching your belly would be an unhealthy lifestyle?  

Before changing your eating and lifestyle habits and maintaining your same drinking habits, Bamforth doesn't leave without dropping a few comforting parting words: 

“You have this kind of potential space in your belly, and when fluid accumulates in there it causes Ascites. It’s not fat, it’s actually fluid…one reason it tends to happen is from liver disease.” 

He couldn't just let us have our shining moment.