Happy 4th of July!!
Alcohol is not a health food. It is, however, consumed anyway even by my most health conscious colleagues. I too indulge every now and then. Let’s cover the healthiest way to imbibe.
Chock full of polyphenols, quercetin, and resveratrol, red wine has shown to have properties that can protect the heart from damage. Antioxidants can help slow down the build-up of plaque in arteries, regulating blood pressure, decreasing inflammation and lowering oxidative stress. A few words of caution. Too much of a good thing can cause heart damage so find the middle ground in consumption and get a Boston Heart Lab test done at least once a year to make sure you are staying safe. The barrels that hold the wine can be contaminated with gluten if a flour-based paste is used to seal the barrels. Although less common these days, if you are highly sensitive to gluten, choose gluten-free wine. Sulfites in red wine can cause headaches, skin rashes, asthmatic reactions, and gut issues for some people.
Research shows a component of tequila, agave, may help people maintain or improve bone health and supply probiotics to the gastrointestinal system. This doesn’t actually mean that drinking tequila can help maintain or improve bone health or provide your gut with probiotics. However, it does make for a mean margarita.
Juniper berries are gins one redeeming factor. Juniper berries have numerous benefits. Such as:
- Reducing inflammation
- Diuretic properties
- Reducing gas and bloating
- High in antioxidants
- Gin-soaked raisins have a history of being used as a home remedy for arthritis pain.
This month I chose a recipe that incorporates the health benefits of gin from juniper berries and black elderberry. Black elderberry has strong antiviral properties and is often prescribed during flu season. Get the recipe HERE.
I don’t prescribe alcohol to my patients for medicinal use but I also don’t condemn them for drinking responsibly and in moderation as long as they are healthy.