Until a few centuries earlier, whisky – or rather, aqua vitae – was considered the cure for every illness. Admittedly, some of the recipes were downright bizarre. However, there is a kernel of truth in them. Whisky does indeed have scientifically proven health benefits for our health.
Obviously, like everything in life, virtue lies somewhere in the middle. So don’t get too excited. You can’t take a sip of whisky and call it ‘medicine’. A shot can’t keep the doctor away. Nonetheless, there is no doubt that whisky can be beneficial to our health when consumed in moderation.
Relief of Cold Symptoms
In the past, whisky was also used to ease flu and cough symptoms. Well, apparently our ancestors really got it right on this point.
Whisky can temporarily widen blood vessels. This means, if drank in small amounts, this spirit can help clear congestion, allowing the body to better fight off infections in the sinuses and chest. Consequently, this effect can also alleviate cold or flu.
Whisky contains fewer calories than other spirits. So, if you are looking for a low-calorie drink for a summer evening, whisky might be the right choice for you
Indeed, it has no carbohydrates or sugars. One single shot (42g or 1.5 ounces) of scotch whiskey contains:
Another health benefit of drinking whisky is ellagic acid. Whisky indeed has a high level of this polyphenol. Thus, it helps control the amount of glucose released by the liver, keeping sugar levels under control.
Alcohol can make the blood thinner. This means that a shot of whisky a day can reduce the risk of blood clots, strokes and heart attacks. Moreover, whisky is rich in antioxidants, thus can help prevent coronary diseases. A lot of health benefits in a dram of whisky!
By the way. Did you know that antioxidants can actually increase a person’s chances of living longer? Well, yes. Our ancestors were quite right after all to call it aqua vitae – water of life.
Good news for anyone in possession of a few bottles of particularly aged whisky.
Apparently, research shows that small amounts of this kind of whisky increase the activities of the cerebral neurotransmitter GABA. In a nutshell, whisky is supposed to help maintain a good memory and things like the nervous system in general.
But that’s not all.
A study found that people who consumed one to six glasses per week had a lower risk of dementia than non-drinkers.
That seems a decent excuse to have your daily dram of whisky!
Last but not least, another health benefit of whisky is certainly the capability to reduce stress.
A shot of whisky can help calm the nerves and reduce anxiety. So, if you have had a long and tiring day, relax and pour yourself a glass.
But beware, if you are in a particularly anxious state, whisky will only make things worse, as well as all types of alcoholic drinks in general.
So always listen to your body in the end. And although we are all fans of whisky here, it must be stressed that it is not a replacement for medicine.
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