September is Self Improvement Month and when people think of self improvement, their minds generally go toward things like losing weight, reading more, trying to meditate…and cutting back on drinking. We say that is nuts. Making the right drink choices in moderation can support your quest for self improvement.
Dr. Meyers R. Hurt III, the chief resident in the University of Texas Medical Branch Department of Family Medicine, recently wrote an article for the Galveston Daily News about the health benefits of craft beer. As a frequent homebrewer, Hurt is all about the hops. These were some of the most interesting things we learned from the good doctor:

• When women have no more than one drink per day, and men have no more than two per day, there can be as much as 30% decrease in the risk of stroke and heart attack. There can also be an increase in the good cholesterol, HDL. You really have to be mindful of the recommended amount of drinks though, because it was also found that all of those awesome health benefits are reversed if you decide to get a little crazy.

• Darker beer = more health benefits

• When yeast is found in your beer, it’s a great source of vitamins, folic acid and protein. Yeast gets strained from a lot of commercial beers, so when you homebrew, you have a lot more control over keeping the good stuff in there.

• Hello, wonder drug! Well, kind of. The antioxidants in hops may help treat anxiety, insomnia and certain female issues.

Drinking some great craft beer is a nice way to get down with self improvement, but another fun way to bring it one step further would be to start brewing on your own. There are classes, books, kits or just good old fashioned Google. However you choose to get started, you can feel good knowing you’re taking the quality of your health and beer in to your own hands.