Alcohol's biggest benefits are well known and well-studied: A glass of wine a day can cut your risk of cardiovascular disease and even help you live longer, and resveratrol, vino's touted antioxidant, has power health perks.
But the benefits of tipping, in moderation, go far beyond heart health, longevity, and red wine.
In fact, a drink here and there, be it beer, liquor, or white wine, can do everything from strengthen your brain to keep colds at bay.
Beer and B vitamins have a lot in common
There's nothing as refreshing as a cold beer on a steamy day. It only gets more interesting as beers shouldn't be slammed as empty calories. According to research and a 2011 study, beer was found to be richer in in thiamin and riboflavin, than wines and ciders.
Researchers suspect that this is because of the base materials used, like barley and hops, and the differences in processing the drinks.
Booze can be kind to your kidneys
A 2013 study showed that while sugary drinks are linked to an increased risk of developing kidney stones, by between 23 to 33 percent, drinking beer and wine was actually linked to lower risk - about 41 to 31 percent lower, respectively.
Vodka is a germ-killing mouthwash substitute
"The high percentage of alcohol in vodka has antibacterial qualities, says Renee McGregor, R.D. Vodka kills the nasty germs and adding some cloves, mint or cinnamon brings on an extra dose of freshness.
Vodka cranberry is a brain-boosting super drink
A recent study published in the journal of consciousness and cognition suggests that the moderately inebriated may have an edge when it comes to creative problem solving.
The research found that young men fed vodka cranberries until they had a blood alcohol level of .075 solved more creative problem tasks in less time than their sober counterparts.
A little wine may keep cold at bay
While heavy drinking can take a serious toll on your immune system, putting you at a higher risk of disease and sickness, in moderation, a little booze could help you put up a fight, according recent research from Oregon Health and Science University.
Some cider is packed with antioxidants
Hard apple cider can be an effervescent and tangy alternative to beer and wine. The beverage, which is experiencing a renewal of popularity has some unique health benefits.
Apples have a high composition of the polyphenol antioxidants essential for good health; studies have demonstrated that these antioxidants are still abundant even when apples are made into cider.
Fernet-Branca aids digestion
Fernet-Branca is a bitter Italian liquor concocted from a centuries-old family recipe. It is a drink of choice among chefs, bartenders, and cocktail aficionados.
McGregor says, "some of the ingredients may indeed have some tonic effects. The mix of herbs, particularly cardamom, camomile, and saffron, is known to aid with digestion."
Red wine is perfect
If you have a choice, drinking red wine may be even healthier than white- but for more reasons than the heart-health perks. On average, a glass of red wine has more iron, magnesium and potassium, as well as lutein and zeaxanthin, which are carotenoids that may reduce the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts.