Governments and media place great efforts into warning the public about the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption. You only need to look at the statistics of accidents caused by drinking and driving, or the crime figures, to realize that these campaigns are necessary. For all the detrimental publicity alcohol attracts it still has its health benefits. You might be surprised to learn the number of alcoholic drinks that contribute to your wellbeing. The only provision is you should only drink in moderation, or the damage to health will far outweigh any gains.
You can make a hot toddy by diluting whiskey with warm water. One tried and trusted recipe from England requires you to mix one part of whiskey with two parts of warm water into a glass and then add a little sugar. This is a proven way to fight off colds and flues. Many prefer this treatment to prescription medicines since all the ingredients are natural. Some people also take a small hot toddy daily. They claim it strengthens their immune system and lengthens lifespans.
An old song from the North of England includes a verse with the words "ale is physic" They used "physic" in a sense we use medicine or cure today. This was no folk belief or innkeeper's advertising gimmick but a proven fact. With local water supplies, polluted people discovered it was much healthier to drink ale rather than tap water in times. Even though clean water is readily available today, enthusiasts claim that ale made with traditional brewing methods supplies vital nutrients and helps relieve stress.
This popular drink produced in Dublin, Ireland, is a type of beer known as stout. Its distinctive taste and color have a strong appeal, but some people also choose to drink it on health grounds. Guinness contains rich deposits of the antioxidants that help fight off infection spread by free radical compounds. It also supplies fibers to the body while containing fewer calories than other beer types. One of the most surprising facts about Guinness is that it is highly recommended for nursing mothers. A small glass now and again improves the amount and quality of mother's milk available for the baby.
Some doctors recommend that people with a tendency to high cholesterol drink red, dry wine. The chances of developing diabetes increase significantly when harmful cholesterol levels get too high. Today various medications help keep these levels within safe limits but apparently drinking this type of wine also helps keep cholesterol down. Also, red wine contains antioxidants that benefit heart health, and it contains valuable doses of magnesium and potassium. However, people with weight issues might prefer to avoid it since red wine is heavier in calories than white wine.
Champagne invariably gets associated with the lives of the very rich. It seems to be a symbol of indulgence to people with little care for their health. This makes it hard to believe it could bring any health benefits. If you take a closer look at the ingredients you find that grape skins are an excellent source of vitamin C. Champagne also boosts antioxidant levels in the body. This strengthens the forces resisting the free radicals that cause infections. However, it is heavy on calories. The cost of the drink also means that most people only consider drinking it on special occasions.
Wine historians explain that this spiced wine initially served as a tonic rather the popular cocktail ingredient it has now become. Wormwood is one of the herbs traditionally added to this wine. The English name for the drink derives from this term. It only contains 70 calories, which makes it suitable for anyone who needs to watch their weight. The spices and herb flavorings give it nutritional value. These facts persuade some vermouth fans that this favorite drink and cooking liquid does bring some health benefits.
Sailors in Britain's Royal Navy received their daily rum ration over hundreds of years. They considered it an important side-benefit of their service. Failure to supply their rum could have serious consequences. The old belief in rum's healthy qualities continues today. In particular, people claim that it helps protect you against colds and chills. In colder climates, a shot of rum brings some welcome warmth to the body, but this due to its high alcoholic content more than a small shot is probably not advisable.
Two hundred years ago the popularity of gin drinking led to severe social problems in England. Hogarth's famous sketch of "Gin Alley" shows this crisis in graphic form. Gin has suffered from a bad press since this time, but this should not detract from the fact that it also has its health benefits. British colonists in tropical lands discovered that gin and tonic helped protect them against dreaded malaria. Even if you do not live in an area where this is a concern, you have other good reasons for taking a shot of gin now and again; it helps fight rheumatic pain and reduce skin drinking.
In common with whiskey, brandy has a long history of use as a tonic against colds and flus. It has anti-inflammatory properties while its strong alcohol content destroys bacteria. The antioxidants found in a glass of brandy strengthen the immune system, and they even help improve heart health by reducing cholesterol accumulations. Again, these benefits only come from moderate drinking – it is all too easy to have too much of a good thing.
You do not have to be a Cossack to enjoy a glass or two of vodka occasionally. You might find it hard to believe but small amounts of this powerful alcoholic beverage stimulate the flow of blood in the arteries and this improves heart functioning. A little bit of vodka rubbed into the skin helps to cleanse it. Anyone suffering from a toothache can find some relief by swilling a little vodka around in their mouth. Also, many drinkers find it helps to relieve stress.
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.