Next time you pour a glass of bubbly, or crack open a can of PBR, or bust into a bottle of Two Buck Chuck, consider reaching for a strawberry. Though heavy drinking may lead to stomach damage, a new European study shows that strawberries can help protect and lessen the harm inflicted on the stomach's mucous membrane.

The study, conducted on laboratory rats, concluded that the more strawberry consumption present in one's diet, the less likely they are to suffer gastric illnesses. Select rats consumed strawberry extract before consuming alcohol in the form of ethyl. Results showed less damage to the stomach membrane in rats with higher strawberry consumption.

Researchers from Italy, Serbia and Spain collaborated on the study, published in PLoS One.

Too much alcohol can lead to gastritis or stomach inflammation.

Maurizio Battino, one of the researchers, said, “This study was not conceived as a way of mitigating the effects of getting drunk but rather as a way of discovering molecules in the stomach membrane that protect against the damaging effects of differing agents.” Scientists sure like to suck all the fun out of science, don't they?

LA Weekly