You may be aware of some of the weird and wonderful uses for whisky, but historically it has been known for having medicinal and healing powers too. Are the medicinal properties of whisky real though?
Although it is an alcohol, whisky is lacking in the calories that are often found in beer and wine as it is a spirit. This does technically make it healthier, however, this in itself does play a huge part in making whisky a medicinal drink.
During the 16th century in Scotland, whisky was thought to work as an anti-aging tonic and many people drank it in order to maintain their youth. It was also thought to be useful for relieving joint pain and congestion.
In terms of relieving joint pain, this could simply be due to the fact that those who drank it experienced intoxication which tends to work as a form of pain relief, however, whisky is still used today as a decongestant, with many people enjoying hot toddies during the winter.
When whisky reached America, it was still used primarily as a health tonic, treating issues such as pneumonia and tuberculosis as well as high blood pressure.
While we understand today that drinking large amounts of alcohol can actually lead to health issues in itself, back in those days doctors most likely misunderstood the signs of intoxication as signs the ‘health tonic’ was working wonders.
However, we now know a lot more about whisky and how it could potentially be used medicinally. Some of the supposed benefits of whisky include improving heart health by lowering bad cholesterol levels. Reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke.
It is also still a well-known remedy for relieving cold and flu symptoms such as congestion, as the alcohol content can help to increase blood flow, which helps to clear mucus and leave your airways feeling more open.
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