17 Apr '13, 1pm

It’s official: Just the taste of beer makes your brain happy

It’s official: Just the taste of beer makes your brain happy

A group of researchers led by David Kareken [Ed. note: lucky!] of Indiana University came to the finding, published today in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology , by giving tiny amounts of beer to 49 adult men and tracking changes in their brain chemistry with a positron emission tomography (PET) scanner , which measures levels of various molecules in the brain. They chose participants with varying levels of typical alcohol consumption — from heavy drinkers to near-teetotalers — and even tested them with the beer they reported that they drank most frequently. Because they used an automated system to spray just 15 milliliters (about half an ounce) of beer on each participant’s tongue over the course of 15 minutes, they could be sure that any changes in brain chemistry wouldn’t be due to intoxication. Interestingly, the amount of dopamine release per person wasn’t random. Pe...

Full article: http://grist.org/list/its-official-just-the-taste-of-beer...

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