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Guinness Diet

author image A.M. Tacon
A.M. Tacon is an associate professor of health at Texas Tech University. Her research interests include psychosocial factors in cancer, complementary therapies and stress reduction in individuals with cancer. Dr. Tacon runs mindfulness-based stress reduction programs for women with breast cancer, which is based on various forms of mindfulness meditation.
Guinness Diet
A pint of stout beer on a patio table. Photo Credit: zmurciuk_k/iStock/Getty Images

Guinness, a famous brew world-wide, is a stout beer created in Dublin, Ireland, in 1759, that first was brewed in the St. James Brewery. Through the decades, advertisements have claimed health benefits. For example, as early as 1931, the "Good for You" campaign ran: "Seven glasses, seven days of the week and seven beneficial reasons to drink Guinness (for strength, nerves, digestion, exhaustion, sleeplessness, tonic effects and the blood)," according to Yet, the Guinness diet seems to be a stretch in terms of health.

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Guinness Brews

Guinness brews are involved in the diet. Types of Guinness beer that you may be familiar with include Guinness Original Stout Draft, Guinness Extra Stout, Foreign Extra Stout and Guinness Draught. Stouts tend to be more bitter due to the fact that they contain additional hops in their ingredients.

Nutrition Information

A 12-oz. serving of Guinness Draft contains 215 calories, 18 g of carbohydrates, 1.6 g of protein and an alcohol content of 4.2 percent, according to A 12-oz. serving of Guinness Extra Stout contains 153 calories, 17.4 g of carbohydrates, 3 g of protein and an alcohol content by volume of 4.27 percent, states A 12-oz. serving of Foreign Extra Stout contains 176 calories, 14 g of sugar, 3 g of protein and an alcohol content by volume of 7.5 percent, according to A 12-oz. serving of Guinness Draught contains 125 calories, 10 g of carbohydrates and an alcohol content of 4 percent, states

The Guinness Diet

In Ireland, blood donors and post-operative patients are given a pint of Guinness to help them recover, according to, exemplifying the health belief associated with Guinness. The Guinness diet is a liquid diet that consists of only drinking Guinness for nutrition and sustenance. No other foods are consumed due to the belief that Guinness is nutritionally complete in itself. The diet is not promoted by the Guinness company or by any reputable lifestyle health or diet companies, but rather appears to be a beer myth. Moreover, any weight loss experienced by this so-called diet is likely water loss.


Despite claims that this thick and dark Irish brew is nutritionally complete, the drink obviously lacks essential nutrients and components of a regular, solid food diet. This diet does not provide essential building blocks for the body, such as protein and fats. Moreover, the Guinness diet certainly does not adhere to the health adage of moderate consumption of alcohol. Specifically, the recommended amount of alcohol for an American woman is one drink daily, and two drinks for an American man, according to the U.S. 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. As always, discuss dietary or weight concerns with your physician.

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