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Can man survive on beer alone?

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JBrady

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Ok I'm bored and just thought about this idea, lol. I've read about monks way back when who would go through periods of fasting where they would use beer for nutrients in place of food. I've also read about beer being thought of as a food back in old times and also being used for payment to workers and such. So could man survive on homebrew alone? Does the beer contain enough nutrients to keep a person not only alive but also healthy? I'm a boilermaker so I work about 6-8 months a year on and off, so I'd be glad to undertake an experiment if its possible, lol. I'm also interested in seeing if I would gain or lose weight during such a experiment. So have I just completely gone crazy, or would it be possible? Who would like to see me try? Thanks for entertaining one of my wilder questions fellas, lol.
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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Alright there is one vote of confidence, I was thinking maybe 1 for breakfast, 2 for lunch, and 2-3 for dinner. What do yall think, lol?
 

Mongrel

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Alright there is one vote of confidence, I was thinking maybe 1 for breakfast, 2 for lunch, and 2-3 for dinner. What do yall think, lol?
Maybe if you go with 22 oz bottles. Think you might need more calories.
 

msarro

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No. You need protein and fat. Even if you ate the wheat itself you'd still be missing some of the amino acids you'd need to live. Sorry :(

Also with no fiber you'd be more stuffed up than a thanksgiving turkey
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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No. You need protein and fat. Even if you ate the wheat itself you'd still be missing some of the amino acids you'd need to live. Sorry :(

Also with no fiber you'd be more stuffed up than a thanksgiving turkey
damn someone always has to ruin my dreams, lol, just kidding msarro, thanks for saving my life, haha. All jokes aside though, how about the story about fasting with beer, how does that work without putting yourself at risk of death?
 

vitrael

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I'm no dietitian but I am fairly certain the first thing to kill you would be scurvy.

Beer, unless somehow made with citrus fruit or some other source, is devoid of vitamin C. Complete vitamin C deficiency in diet is very painful and unavoidably fatal within months or even weeks.

Say you were drinking witbier with a slice of orange, I'm not sure which deficiency would undue you first, but I'm certain any number of missing micronutrients would undue you in relatively short order. Until then, yo-ho-ho!
 
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The answer is clear...

Joe's Ancient Orange Mead for breakfast (vitamin C)
Bacon-infused bourbon for lunch (fat)
Homebrew for dinner....
 

msarro

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So as a forum project we should brew up some meal-replacement beer. Lots of crystal for body, bacon infusion for protein and fat! And... chunks of hops for fiber?
 

rexbanner

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They did a Manswers on this, and yes you can, for a while at least.

I remember reading a story about a guy who actually did it for a month though. It was pretty horrendous and depressing. He started hallucinating, got terrible acne and other ailments, and it sounded like he did some pretty serious damage to his body. You can screw up your adrenal glands through poor diet, and that's serious.

He was, however, drinking the ****tiest brands of beer out there.
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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So as a forum project we should brew up some meal-replacement beer. Lots of crystal for body, bacon infusion for protein and fat! And... chunks of hops for fiber?
That would be a fun project for sure.

On another note I've been googling about this subject for a few minutes now and it seems that beer was the choice drink 100's of years ago due to water being unsafe in most areas, beer was free of all the nasties that made people sick. So would it be possible to substitue all liquid consumption with beer and still be healthy, as long as you ate healthy foods?
 

kpr121

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That would be a fun project for sure.
So would it be possible to substitue all liquid consumption with beer and still be healthy, as long as you ate healthy foods?
I don't see why not. As long as that diet had all the essential nutrients you should be fine. The only thing I can think of is maybe the fact that alcohol makes you dehydrated, but as long you arent drinking DIPAs and RIS all day everyday that shouldnt be too much of a factor.

It would be hard to get your recommended 8 glasses of water (in beer) each day and keep the weight off though, one would think?
 

msarro

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Possibly... you'd need to make sure that you're eating foods with cooked water or natural water in them still otherwise you'd get super dehydrated.
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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Possibly... you'd need to make sure that you're eating foods with cooked water or natural water in them still otherwise you'd get super dehydrated.
I hear ya, I eat alot of cucumber and tomato raw with salt and pepper during the day, which is loaded with water. I bet I could devise a healthy diet made out of small portions of healthy food like raw veggies and fish, and moderate beer consumption and nothing else. Might be fun to try.
 

msarro

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I hear ya, I eat alot of cucumber and tomato raw with salt and pepper during the day, which is loaded with water. I bet I could devise a healthy diet made out of small portions of healthy food like raw veggies and fish, and moderate beer consumption and nothing else. Might be fun to try.
Do that and live in humid conditions and you should be set! :)

Make sure that if you try it to document everything. Yay science!
 
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I hear ya, I eat alot of cucumber and tomato raw with salt and pepper during the day, which is loaded with water. I bet I could devise a healthy diet made out of small portions of healthy food like raw veggies and fish, and moderate beer consumption and nothing else. Might be fun to try.
hmmmm.....kinda sounds like my current diet. :D
 

PurpleJeepXJ

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Wheat beer, especially homebrew with the yeast cake, you can live off of. You may need some vitamin C now and then.... thats what Belgian beers are for.
 

WoodNeck

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I thought this was a neat idea until I saw the $6 pizza AD at the bottom of the screen.

game over
 

Waunabeer

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Has anyone ever added liquid vitamin supplements into the fermenter? What better way to promote beer than by it being a health food drink. "A 6-pack a day keeps the doctor away". I'll bet the human population would shoot up like a rocket if that was the case.
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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what about beer with living yeast like homebrew along with good quality vitamins and nothing else. Are we getting closer to a realistic beer only diet yet?
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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I'll bet the human population would shoot up like a rocket if that was the case.
Crap, if anything we need a little depopulation, lol.

Also your adding vitamins directly to the beer is a good idea, you don't think the yeast would destroy the introduced vitamins though do you?
 

Waunabeer

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Crap, if anything we need a little depopulation, lol.

Also your adding vitamins directly to the beer is a good idea, you don't think the yeast would destroy the introduced vitamins though do you?
As long as it's not sweet, probably not, but the alcohol might.
 

ChshreCat

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This is one of the bad things about beer. When you sink deep into alcoholism and stop eating, if you drink beer you can last a long time on beer alone. My father proved that. Sorry to bring a downer to the conversation.
 
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JBrady

JBrady

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This is one of the bad things about beer. When you sink deep into alcoholism and stop eating, if you drink beer you can last a long time on beer alone. My father proved that. Sorry to bring a downer to the conversation.
I understand chshre, the main reason I inquired about this is because of the monks going through their fasting periods on beer alone. I wondered if they did it why can't I. I'm also thinking that small portioned healthy diet along with a healthy(non harmful) qauntity of beer could be all a human may need to survive. I don't know if this might be true, provable, or a load of bullcrap but I'm going to experiment to find out, I'm just not going to do it until I educate myself a little bit more so that I don't harm my body, lol.
 

Waunabeer

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Understood, I have a few in my family and it's no laughing matter. I think we are merely speculating and having fun with it. I for one love food and could never give it up. I think I have an addiction to it or something.

I don't mean to high-jack the thread:
ChshreCat: on a side note, I posted a response to your Saison recipe the other day. Check it out and let me know. Also, how well do standard bottle caps hold up to the saison?
 

Zamial

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... the main reason I inquired about this is because of the monks going through their fasting periods on beer alone.
I just want to bring up a few things I know of this subject. Fasting is done for up to 2 weeks. Most fasts are 3 to 7 days. Fasting is actually good for you because it helps "cleanse your body". When fasting, the standard is WATER ONLY and some fasts allow for bread.
The way I understand it, the "abby ales" / "fasting beer" was added to the fasting diet after the 1st week. This added a much needed higher caloric intake and vitamins.
Also of note, most "fasts" are done while meditating/praying or very low physical activity.

I wondered if they did it why can't I.
You can! a bit of research will help out LOTS.

I'm also thinking that small portioned healthy diet along with a healthy(non harmful) qauntity of beer could be all a human may need to survive.
I am lost... survival does not = fasting, these are 2 radically different concepts...survival is normally not a choice, while fasting is. I think you are blurring the lines of fasting and "how long can I live on beer alone." To date I have never heard of anyone causing harm to their body by fasting up to 14 days.

Only consuming beer, I think, would be pretty dangerous and hard on your body. Remember the monks did this to cleanse themselves not to get bombed, I would bet that a pint of strong ale after a week of bread and water would offer a buzz tho...

The idea of eating better and reducing portions to what is needed vs. wanted is a diet/lifestyle change not a fast, IMO. Both are great and I incourage you to try them and tell us about it!
 
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Add Airborn to the wheat beer!! Problem solved! Live forever on that beer... Ok Ok Ok maybe not forever... But long enough to know you want a Porter and a Bacon Vodka from time to time!!!
 

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I think you would waste too much energy loling :D cut that down and id say a week or two before the lack of vitamins set in.
 

Valcarde

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IFasting is actually good for you because it helps "cleanse your body".
'Cleanse the body' of what exactly? Specific compounds that are in our food that need to be removed? Something that can only be taken out of your body by starving yourself, instead of watching what you eat if you're trying to avoid certain things?

I've often heard this term 'Cleanse the body' being used to remove, say 'toxins', but it seems finding a concrete description of exactly what these toxins are except for a nebulous concept is daunting.
 
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