Drinking a shot of smooth full-flavoured brandy this Christmas could actually benefit your health, Monash University researchers have found.
Dr. Gordon Troup from the School of Physics said that, in moderation, brandy had been shown to have supplementary medicinal health benefits -- and the better quality the brandy the greater the benefit.
The key to its benefit is antioxidants contained in the brandy that come mainly from copper during the distilling process, Dr. Troup said.
He said a shot (30mls) of brandy would give the equivalent antioxidant potential to the daily recommended intake of vitamin C.
"The antioxidants only make up only a small percentage of substances found in brandy, but they are a very important part of the mix.
"So when you are enjoying a slice of brandy-infused fruit cake or a drink of good quality brandy over Christmas you can put your mind at rest that this amber liquid isn't too bad for you at all. In moderation, of course."
Red wine is famously known as an effective antioxidant so it stands to reason that brandy, technically a grape-based spirit, could offer similar benefits, Dr. Troup said.
"We thought the antioxidants might disappear during the brandy distilling process but we have found this is not actually the case," he said.
The research, by Dr. Troup and Dr. Steve Langford from the School of Chemistry, follows a similar investigation of the properties of whiskey.
"We have found that shots of whiskey and brandy are very similar in terms of their antioxidant potential," Dr. Troup said.
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