Healthiest Alcoholic Beverages

When you’re trying to keep inflammation away, you’re likely to keep an eye on the foods and beverages you consume. However, there’s a lot of confusing information out there about alcohol consumption. According to Dietary Guidelines for Americans, it only takes one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men to consume a “moderate” amount of alcohol. When it comes to inflammation, the research shows that even this is too much.

Alcohol can create intestinal inflammation, stress the liver, slow down the burning of fat, cause weight gain, and disturb the absorption of macronutrients. While this may come as unpleasant news to some, the good news is that if you’re in good health, you may be able to get away with having one drink three times per week or less.

Let’s go over some of the healthiest alcohols you can consume. We’ve even included one of our favorite recipes at the end of this post. Enjoy!

Wine

Person holding a glass of red wine at a farm. Only the person's hand is shown.

If you enjoy a glass of wine at the end of a long week, you are far from alone. This ages-old beverage contains healthy antioxidants such as resveratrol that reduce blood pressure and the risk of stroke and provide anti-aging benefits. However, it’s important to take note of the quality of the wine you drink. Yes, we’re saying that your favorite wine may not be the healthiest choice. There are some details to consider.

Keep in mind how the grapes are grown and processed. Conventionally grown grapes are often treated heavily with pesticides. Poor fermentation practices can also yield wine that has been contaminated by carcinogenic mycotoxins due to mold exposure. It’s also a little-known fact that many wine companies use dozens of different additives that don’t legally need to be disclosed on labels. These include ingredients like ammonia, added sugar, metals, and all sorts of oddities that can boost inflammation.

We recommend selecting organic wines for optimal health. Dry Farm Wines is an excellent choice! They source the best wines from sustainable family farms and maintain strict quality control measures like lab testing to ensure that wines are mold-free. This reduces the ick factor and the risk of inflammation!

Spirits

Alcoholic drinks in a variety of clear glasses with fruit in them, sitting on a wooden table.

Distilled spirits such as vodka, gin, whiskey, rum, and tequila contain limited to no sugar, so they are the least likely to impact your metabolism and blood sugar levels. Although it can be tempting to pour in sugary mixers, these will destroy the perks of drinking straight spirits. Think about adding sparkling water, fresh herbs, or citrus juices instead.

Concerned about gluten? You’ve got options when it comes to distilled spirits. Most rums are distilled from sugarcane and are therefore gluten-free. Vodkas and gins are typically made from potatoes or fermented grains, but there are brands such as Tito‘s that serve those with gluten allergies or sensitivities well. Since tequila and Mezcal are distilled from the agave plant, they are both naturally gluten-free. However, always keep in mind that tequila may include fillers that contain gluten. Mezcal must be 100% distilled from agave only.

Try This Recipe

The next time you’re about to mix up a tasty alcoholic beverage, keep this recipe in mind. It includes healthy fruits, herbs, and seltzer to create a refreshing flavor. Let us know what you think after you try it!

Ingredients

1 cup of strawberries chopped into small pieces

2 tablespoons of honey

2 tablespoons of warm water

1/4 cup of lime juice

1/4 cup of packed mint leaves

4 ounces of white rum

2 cups of lime seltzer

2 cups of ice

Extra mint and lime for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Combine strawberries, honey, and warm water in a blender. Blend on high for one minute until smooth. Pour the strawberry mixture through a strainer to remove seeds.

  2. Add lime juice and mint to a cocktail shaker. Muddle the mint to release flavor and aroma. Add the strawberry mixture and white rum, and shake to combine.

  3. Fill glasses with ice. Divide the mixture among two glasses. Add one cup of seltzer or club soda to the mixture. Garnish with mint and lime for decoration, and enjoy your drink!

For more healthy tips, join the conversation on our Facebook group, Integrative Health and Nutrition for Chronic Conditions. We post live videos, guides, and other useful information to help you elevate your health and wellness!

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