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Dissolved Silicon and Its Origin in Belgian Beers—A Multivariate Analysis


Beer is a quintessential part of Belgian heritage. We performed a detailed analysis of factors controlling Si content in Belgian beers as a case study to coincide with the 2011 IBiS meeting in Antwerp (Belgium). Beer is one of the richest dietary sources of Si. Three decades of research have yielded evidence of a role for Si in human physiology: it plays an essential role in bone mineral density and reduces the biological availability of aluminium. We analysed 119 Belgian beers: highest dissolved Si concentrations were found in high fermentation, traditionally brewed ales. Concentrations ranged between 214 and 2,071 μmol L − 1. This is probably due to the complexity and length of the brewing procedure: longer, more complicated processing and presence of brewing sediment in the bottle allows more Si to dissolve out of the base products like hop, barley or even rice. As a side effect of fermentation, alcohol content was related to Si content.

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Correspondence to Eric Struyf.

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Schoelynck, J., Beauchard, O., Jacobs, S. et al. Dissolved Silicon and Its Origin in Belgian Beers—A Multivariate Analysis. Silicon 5, 3–12 (2013).

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  • Silicon
  • Beer
  • Belgium
  • Barley
  • Fermentation