Beer Flavonoid Linked to Reduction in Weight Gain and Cholesterol

A flavonoid found within hops and beer could help to reduce weight and levels of LDL cholesterol, according to the results of a recent study.

Previous research has suggested the potential health benefits of flavonoids found in tea, chocolate, blueberries, and other fruits and vegetables. For this reason, researchers sought to determine the effects of xanthohumol, a flavonoid found in hops and beer, on lipid metabolism and glucose levels in a mouse model of metabolic syndrome.

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They divided 48 animals into groups of 16, administering 3 distinct doses of xanthohumol to each group (0, 30, or 60 mg/kg body weight/day). All groups were fed a high-fat diet.

Overall, the animals given the highest dosage of xanthohumol saw an 80% reduction in LDL cholesterol levels, 42% reduction in insulin levels, and 78% reduction in levels of IL-6, a biomarker of inflammation, compared to the group given no xanthohumol.

Reduction in levels of proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin 9 (PCSK9) levels were 44% lower in the group receiving the highest dosage, compared to the group receiving no xanthohumol, which may explain the reduction in LDL cholesterol, according to the researchers.

“Our results show that oral administration of [xanthohumol] improves markers of systemic inflammation and metabolic syndrome in diet-induced obese C57BL/6J mice,” they concluded.

—Michael Potts


Miranda CL, Elias VD, Hay JJ, Choi J, Reed RL, Stevens JF. Xanthohumol improves dysfunctional glucose and lipid metabolism in diet-induced obese C57BL/6J mice [published online March 11, 2016]. Arch Biochem Biophys. doi:10.1016/