This time of year lots of people like to enjoy a festive glass of eggnog in front of a crackling fire. The traditional winter drink made with eggs, cream, nutmeg and spiked with alcohol has been around for hundreds of years, according to “Smithsonian Magazine,” people have been drinking a version of it since at least the 13th century. But it may surprise you to know this old school boozy beverage actually packs these health benefits.
- A cup of eggnog has a big dose of vitamins and minerals – We’re talking over 400 milligrams of potassium, about a third of your daily needs of calcium, some vitamin B12, B2, vitamin A, and iron, according to dietitian and nutritionist Ginger Hultin. The nutritional boost is from the eggs and dairy products, so if you’re sipping a non-dairy version, you might not get the same benefits.
- The egg is a source of protein – One glass of eggnog isn’t enough to provide your daily protein needs of about 50 grams, but it does contain between 10 and 12 grams of protein.
- The spices can be anti-inflammatory – Eggnog commonly contains nutmeg, which has anti-inflammatory antioxidants. Downing a glass of it isn’t the same as popping an Advil, but it’s something.
- And now for the downside – Any health benefits in eggnog are undone by the alcohol, according to registered dietitian Liz Weinandy. Of course, you can enjoy it booze-free, but where’s the fun in that?