Beer, Women and Psoriasis: Bad Brew?

woman drinking beer, generic, stock
(istockphoto)

(CBS) For women with psoriasis, it may be time to put down that full calorie beer and opt for a lighter brew.

New research from Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston indicates that drinking beer can increase the risk of psoriasis by more than 70 percent.

More than seven million Americans are afflicted with the auto-immune disease that often causes red patches and extreme itching on the skin.

The new study, published in Archives of Dermatology, looked at 82,869 between the ages of 27 and 44.

Scientists found that of women who drank an average of 2.3 drinks or more per week, the chances of getting psoriasis skyrocketed 72 percent compared to women who didn't drink at all, according to WebMD. For women who drank five or more beers each week, the risk of coming down with the affliction was 2.3 time higher.

The interesting kicker here is that wine, booze and light beer didn't increase the psoriasis risk at all.

So why is full calorie beer singled out?

According to WebMD, researchers hypothesize that barley may be the problem. Full calorie beers use the grain for fermentation and it contains gluten, a starch that many people with psoriasis are sensitive to.

For more information, visit the National Psoriasis Foundation.