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What Is Ginger Beer?

Love Ginger Beer but Have No Idea What's in It? We've Got Answers

SANTA MONICA, CA - MARCH 03:  Rachel's Ginger Beer products are displayed the 2018 Film Independent Spirit Awards on March 3, 2018 in Santa Monica, California.  (Photo by Amanda Edwards/Getty Images for Film Independent)

If you're a regular drinker of ginger beer, you probably already know that there's no alcohol in most of them — so that means you can drink as many as you want, right? Ginger is healthy, so why not? Not so fast.

Although ginger beer doesn't contain alcohol, making it more akin to root beer than the tasty offerings from breweries, the formula is more or less that of a soda, though stronger in flavor, consisting mostly of ginger root, sugar or syrup, dry yeast, lemon, and carbonated water. You already know that sugary beverages are best drank occasionally (and that plain water is always best for your waistline and health), so moderation is still in order when it comes to ginger beer. The typical calorie count for ginger beer is fairly steep. It ranges from 14 to 16 calories per ounce or 168 to 192 calories for a 12-ounce bottle.

You're not wrong in thinking there are health benefits to ginger, though. Ginger root is known for its ability to relieve nausea, and studies show it also is effective in reducing motion sickness, pain, and inflammation — and possibly even helping to reduce cholesterol and prevent colon cancer. Ginger also contains minerals and nutrients including iron, potassium, magnesium, zinc, folate, and niacin, but we're talking about the real thing. Stick to tea if you want to reap the benefits.

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