The surprising health benefits of drinking alcohol

health benefits of drinking alcoholWhile we are often bombarded with information on how alcohol can damage your health, pack on the pounds, and worsen mental illnesses like depression, some studies show that having a drink may provide some surprising health benefits, as long as it’s done in moderation. Keep reading to learn how different alcohols may help to improve your health.

Red wine

A glass or two of wine may help with weight loss, building immunity, and could even lower your risk of heart disease.


Weight loss: The dark red grapes used for creating some wines contain a chemical called ellagic acid, which slows the growth of fat cells and can stop new ones from being created. This helps to boost the metabolism of fatty acids in the liver cells and manage obesity. A glass of red wine has also been shown to enhance your workout and improve muscle strength and heart function.

Immunity: Drinking a glass of red wine regularly can help prevent catching a cold by as much as 60 percent due to the antioxidants found in the drink.

Heart health: Red wine’s proangiogenic and anti-inflammatory properties can help preserve heart health and even lower your risk of heart disease.

Memory: The resveratrol found in the skin of red grapes has been shown to improve cognitive function and memory.

Longevity: A review of 24 studies provided evidence that women who drink one glass of wine every day often have a lower risk of all-cause mortality than their peers.


While most people associate beer with sugar, carbs, and the dreaded “beer belly,” some brews actually come with a host of health benefits.

Vitamins: Beer is packed with B-vitamins, riboflavin, thiamin, calcium, and magnesium. Darker brews also have a higher iron content.

Brain health: Beer contains the compound xanthohumol, which can help prevent damage to brain cells, and in turn, slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Stronger bones: Full of silicon, one or two beers a day can help increase bone density, especially in women. In a recent study, women who drank two beers a day saw an 8.3 percent increase in their bone density.

Heart health: A recent study from Sweden found that women who drank one or two beers a week were 30 percent less likely to suffer a heart attack when compared to their peers.

Kidney health: Drinking beer moderately has also been found to lower your risk of developing kidney stones by 30 percent, according to a study published in the Clinical Journal of American Society of Nephrology.

Diabetes risk: Drinking one or two beers has been found to lower the risk of developing diabetes by 40 percent compared to people who drink too much or don’t drink at all. Moderation is key here, as drinking heavily can actually worsen your risk of diabetes.


Stronger alcohols have also been found to provide health benefits, including helping with weight loss, sore throats, and even diseases.

Heart health: Vodka can help improve blood circulation, as well as aid in the creation of more collateral vessels that connect the heart and lungs.

Weight loss: The agavins found in tequila can help keep glucose levels lower and leave you feeling fuller longer.

Muscle pain relief: Drinking a small amount of alcohol after an intense workout, whether it be wine or whiskey, can help reduce the muscle soreness that often results from physical exertion.


Sore throat relief: Mixing whiskey with warm water and honey is a quick way to soothe the raw, sore throat that comes with many common colds.

It’s no secret that too much alcohol can be harmful to your health, but when enjoyed in moderation, wine, beer, and even spirits can actually provide some worthwhile benefits. Be sure to check with your doctor before drinking, as certain medications and medical conditions may not mix well with even the smallest drop of booze.

Related: How long does alcohol stay in your system?

Author Bio

Devon Andre has been involved in the health and dietary supplement industry for a number of years. Devon has written extensively for Bel Marra Health. He has a Bachelor of Forensic Science from the University of Windsor, and went on to complete a Juris Doctor from the University of Pittsburgh. Devon is keenly aware of trends and new developments in the area of health and wellness. He embraces an active lifestyle combining diet, exercise and healthy choices. By working to inform readers of the options available to them, he hopes to improve their health and quality of life.


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