Between all the public holidays and weekends, our social calendars can seem a little jam-packed. The other thing that gets jam-packed? Our liver. Our kidneys. Our bellies.

But not all alcohol is equal. If you’re going to be indulging, try stick to choices that will give you some benefits too (and like with anything, keep it in moderation)

According to this article from Mayo Clinic, drinking can offer some health benefits, especially for your heart. it can lower your risk of heart disease, stroke and possibly reduce your risk of diabetes - if done in moderation of course. Binge drinking every weekend (or even on some weeknights) is not good for anyone, but we understand if you want to let loose a little every now and then. Just do it responsibly. 

According to TIME, there is more evidence from a new study of nearly two million people published in The BMJ that moderate amounts of alcohol appear to be healthy for most heart conditions — but not all of them. 

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Non-drinkers had an increased risk for eight of the 12 heart ailments studied compared to people who drank in moderation. They also had a 56% higher risk of dying unexpectedly from heart disease compared to those who enjoyed a glass or two a day. 

So if you're going to be doing some drinking over this weekend, then do so in moderation, and also try one of these five alcohols since they're better for you:

1. Bubbly

Call it Champagne, MCC, bubbly… it’s all the same thing with a whack of nutrients.

The phenolic acid in bubbly has been proven to help improve memory in the long run and the polyphenols can help reduce blood clots!

MCCs also contain far less sugar than wine, but if you’re looking for a super-low sugar alternative, look out for brands that say Brut Zero. We recommend Graham Beck’s Brut Zero.

2. Red wine

Our most-fave tipsy tidbit: red wine is actually good for you. Yes. Thanks to its antioxidant resveratrol. Try drink lighter styles, such as Pinot Noir, and keep it slightly chilled for summery refreshment.

READ MORE: Everything You Need To Know About Alcohol And Weight Gain

Vodka is lower in kilojoules than other spirits – sorry gin! To stay away from excess sugar, mix your vodka with sparkling water and fresh lime or orange juice. This way you stay hydrated and you the fruit takes away some of the sharp alcoholic flavour.

3. Vodka

Vodka is lower in kilojoules than other spirits – sorry gin! To stay away from excess sugar, mix your vodka with sparkling water and fresh lime or orange juice. This way you stay hydrated and you the fruit takes away some of the sharp alcoholic flavour.

4. Light beer

Our go-to fave is Windhoek Light because it’s light in alcohol and kilojoules at only 300kJ per bottle and 2.4 percent alcohol. Castle Lite is the next best bet at 4 percent alcohol and 413kJ.

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5. Tequila

While we’re not suggesting you down a bucket load, if you’re going to be doing shots, choose tequila over those sugar-packed coffee-chocolatey flavoured spirits.

And we mean real 100-percent agave, like El Jimador. The agavins lower triglycerides and cholesterol levels. Just remember to drink enough water in between and don’t go drinking on an empty stomach!

These are the 7 simplest weight-loss strategies you’ll ever find. Plus: 6 signs your metabolism is out of whack.

This article was originally published on Women's Health South Africa