Can Alcohol Be Healthy? Here’s How Several Types of Alcohol Can Benefit Your Health

It’s no secret that too much alcohol can be a bad thing. In moderation, however, certain types of alcohol actually have some amazing health benefits. From helping your heart to preventing Alzheimer’s, alcohol can make you a healthier person, one sip at a time. (To reap alcohol’s benefits, only consume one drink per day.)

A line of different colored alcoholic cocktails

Alcohol does have some health benefits. | Tsuguliev/Getty Images

Red wine protects your heart

It’s long been suspected that red wine can benefit the heart, but more studies in recent years have confirmed its heart-healthy properties. Red wine contains resveratrol, a compound that can lower one’s heart disease risk. Pouring a glass of vino each night (Pinot Noir, specifically) can be a great way to promote heart health. However, it should be known that solely drinking red wine to prevent heart disease may not work as well as you want it to. You should also keep up a healthy lifestyle by eating well and exercising daily.

Tequila helps your gut health

If you’ve ever needed a reason to grab a margarita after work, here it is. Tequila isn’t just for celebrating Cinco de Mayo; it’s a great way to promote gut health. Tequila contains agave, which is high in inulin. Inulin aids in digestion by nourishing the good bacteria in your gut. Tequila also contains fructans, which act as a prebiotic to nourish that gut bacteria. (Prebiotics differ from probiotics; probiotics help form that good gut bacteria, while prebiotics keep it there.)

Beer may prevent neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s

Cracking open a cold one at the end of a long day doesn’t have to make you feel guilty. We all need a drink now and then, but moderately consuming beer has been linked to better brain health. Beer is made with hops; a compound in hops called xanthohumal has shown success in protecting the brain from damaging neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Several studies also suggest beer can do more for the body, such as prevent certain cancers.

Vodka promotes oral hygiene

If you forget to brush your teeth, don’t worry. Just swirl some vodka around in your mouth and you’ll be good as new. It definitely shouldn’t be a substitute for brushing your teeth, but according to Men’s Health, it is a known antiseptic and can combat bad breath if you’re desperate. It’s also been known to soothe toothaches. However, if you’re worried you’ll forget to brush your teeth, you might want to carry some breath mints in your bag — walking around with vodka in your handbag or briefcase isn’t a good look.

Whiskey can boost your immune system

Nobody enjoys getting sick. If you’re looking to combat a cold, whiskey might hold the answer. For years, whiskey has been used to boost the immune system and cure a cold quickly. Specifically, hot toddies (which contain whiskey, hot water, lemon, and honey), can dilate blood vessels, which helps your body rid the infection faster, Forbes reports. Moderately drinking whiskey has also shown promising results in fighting cancer and lowering dementia risk.

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