The next time you are feeling a bit under the weather, you should consider reaching for a glass of whiskey instead of going through the medicine cabinet. While there is no actual cure for the pesky common cold, doctors at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center say that whiskey may help relieve some of your cold symptoms like nasal congestion and a sore throat.
The alcohol from the whiskey dilates blood vessels just enough so that it makes it easier for your mucus membranes to fight the infection. The classic hot toddy drink, which contains whiskey, lemon juice, honey and hot water, has been show to help deal with even your worst winter colds. However, it’s important to know that you can go overboard with these drinks and actually end up making your cold worse.
Alcohol is known as a diuretic, which means that it extracts water from the body. This dehydration process is the reason why you may wake up with a headache and unquenchable thirst after a night of drinking. Therefore, it’s essential to only have a glass of two of whiskey to relieve your cold symptoms. In addition to relieve nasal issues, whiskey can help relive coughing episodes and sore throats.
An old-fashioned cold remedy that contains no chemicals or drugs is called whiskey cough syrup. Mixing honey, rock candy, lemon juice and a bit of whiskey can be used to suppress coughs and chest congestion. Furthermore, whiskey and a fresh citrus fruit can be used as a sore throat remedy. If you slice a lemon or lime and soak the halves in whiskey, you can then suck on the halves in order to help ease the scratchiness or pain that can overwhelm your throat while you have a cold. While these simple home remedies may be helpful for adults, it is not recommended for young children or teenagers.
After finding out all the beneficial uses for whiskey, it’s no wonder that whiskey comes from a Gaelic term meaning “the water of life.” Moreover, due to the process by which whiskey is aged and distilled in wooden casks, it is also known to contain beneficial antioxidants and heart-helping phenols. Studies have also shown that moderate consumption of whiskey may decrease your chances of contracting some common viruses by relaxing blood vessels and decreasing inflammation within your body. Overall, those who indulge in an occasional glass of whiskey may find some trivial health benefits and relief from some common winter cold symptoms.