Is Bourbon Good For You & Your Health? (2023 Updated)

Last Updated on November 5, 2023 by Lydia Martin

Scientific research has shown that drinking wine can lower your body’s cholesterol levels and keep your heart healthy. We don’t know about you, but that sure took away most of the guilt we felt when we had a tipple after dinner on most nights. 

But we’re not talking about wine here. We’re going to be talking about bourbon. 

So, like wine, does bourbon have health benefits? Is bourbon good for you? Let’s see what science has to say here. 

8 Potential Benefits of Drinking Bourbon

8 Potential Benefits of Drinking Bourbon 

1. Reduces Stress & Risk of Cancer 

It was discovered that wine contained significant amounts of ellagic acid, an antioxidant that develops during the aging process in wooden barrels. 

But did you know that bourbon contains even more ellagic acid than wine? That’s what Jim Swan, the Einstein of Whiskey, says. 

This antioxidant fights and prevents free radicals that turn into cancer cells from forming in our bodies. So, yes, bourbon works by preventing cancer in your body. 

The same is true for stress. Bourbon contains many calming properties that soothe the nerves, improve blood circulation, and reduce stress. 

So go ahead — you deserve that glass of whiskey after a long, stressful day at work. 

2. Controls Diabetes

Bourbon on the rocks

The ellagic acid found in bourbon lowers the risk of cancer and is also responsible for controlling diabetes. 

This antioxidant regulates the body’s insulin levels and controls the glucose the liver releases to keep your blood sugar in check. A study done by Harvard University revealed that people at risk of developing type 2 diabetes were reduced by 30 percent, thanks to drinking the recommended serving of whiskey daily. 

3. Weight Loss

Studies have shown that bourbon can help you lose weight. This liquor is gluten-free (thanks to its distillation process), contains little sugar, has a low carb count, and has significantly fewer calories than wine or beer. But how many calories are in a shot of bourbon? Of course, this is considering you aren’t adding any sugary mixers to it. 

Many people also use it as an appetite suppressant. 

The next time there’s a party, ask for whiskey neat instead of light beer — your body will thank you for it. 

4. Provides Healthy Cholesterol Levels 

New Riff Winter Whiskey Kentucky Bourbon

All whiskeys contain high levels of polyphenols. These have been shown to reduce triglycerides, or bad cholesterol while increasing high-density lipoprotein (HDL) or good cholesterol. [1

Bad cholesterol and triglycerides clog your arteries, which can cause heart attacks and strokes. Good cholesterol and HDL keep your arteries clear. 

5. Helps Relieve Cold

Instead of hot tea, try reaching for bourbon the next time you have a cold. Drinking whiskey can widen your blood vessels, which helps the mucus membranes deal with the infection. This can relieve coughing, wheezing, and clogged noses accompanied by the common cold. Drinking whiskey can also boost the immune system. 

6. Prevents Heart Disease 

Cream of Kentucky Bourbon

Consuming moderate amounts of bourbon can lower the risk of heart disease, both in those at risk and those yet to develop. 

The antioxidants can also absorb free radicals that damage phenolic compounds within the body.  

7. Boosts Cognitive Performance

Cognitive or peak brain performance is enhanced by drinking the right amount of whiskey per week. 

A study done by the National Institutes of Health revealed that drinking the right amount of whiskey lowers the risk of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s and keeps the brain intact. 

Non-drinkers and heavy drinkers had a higher risk of deteriorating cognitive performance (so yes, too much of a good thing is bad for you). 

8. Fewer Hangover Symptoms

A man drinking lemon juice

Lastly, while this isn’t necessarily a health benefit, we can definitely attest that this alcohol will leave you with a milder hangover than if you were to over-indulge in gin or vodka. 

Surveys have also shown that bourbon drinkers have reported experiencing fewer hangover symptoms than those who preferred other spirits. 

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What Happens When You Drink It Everyday 

When you drink bourbon every day, the ellagic acid in the alcohol helps absorb rogue cells that may turn into cancer cells. 

A serving of bourbon every day can also lower your risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, heart attacks, and strokes, thanks to its high levels of polyphenols. But for beginners, how do you drink bourbon?

Is A Shot Of Bourbon A Day Good For You? 

Lemon Bourbon with steak

Yes, a shot of bourbon whiskey a day is good for you. In fact, a shot a day is the recommended amount, and anything more can do more harm than good. 

A standard shot is equal to 1.5 ounces. 

You can all breathe a sigh of relief because drinking bourbon has many health benefits. In fact, doctors prescribed whiskey during the Prohibition Period to treat pneumonia and high blood pressure. 

We have to start by giving a big disclaimer, though — this is not a free pass to drink bourbon until you’re too drunk to function. 

Bourbon can only bring these healthy properties to your body if consumed moderately.

Nutrition Information 

  • Calories: 97 
  • Fat: 0 grams 
  • Protein: 0 grams 
  • Carbohydrates: 0 grams 
  • Sugar: 0 grams 
  • Fiber: 0 grams 


Can bourbon make you fat?

No, bourbon itself won’t make you fat. The only way it could make you fat is if you drink too much or have it with sugary mixers. It’s best to drink this alcohol neat if you don’t want to get fat. 

How much bourbon a day is healthy?

A single serving of bourbon whiskey a day is healthy, which plenty of studies have attested. A single serving is equal to 1.5 ounces. 

So, Is Bourbon Healthy? 

Yes, bourbon is good for you. But it’s not without restrictions. 

Plenty of studies have shown that daily whiskey drinkers have a lower risk of developing health issues like cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and diabetes. This liquor also has plenty of soothing properties that can widen your blood vessels, improve blood circulation, and even keep the common cold at bay. 

However, this isn’t to say that you should binge on bourbon — these health benefits are only applicable to those who drink the recommended dosage per day, which is 1.5 ounces. 

Whiskey also shouldn’t be used as a substitute for a healthy diet and exercise. 



Lydia Martin

Lydia Martin hails from Redmond, Washington, where you’ll find some of the best cocktail bars and distilleries that offer a great mix of local drinks. She used to work as a bar manager in Paris and is a self-taught mixologist whose passion for crafting unique cocktails led her to create Liquor Laboratory. Lydia can whip up a mean Margarita in seconds! Contact at [email protected] or learn more about us here or feel free to give Lydia a tip.

One thought on “Is Bourbon Good For You & Your Health? (2023 Updated)

  • June 15, 2023 6:03 pm at 6:03 pm

    I do a jigger in a tall glass over ice fill with water and then a splash of iced tea , I generally drink 3 or 4 of these a night , doesn’t watering it down like I do help ?


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