Happy hour just got a little happier

Now, before you think I’m a total killjoy, ready to snatch the pumpkin pie right out of your hands, let me assure you—some parts of today’s feast are, in fact, good for you. Including that celebratory cocktail.

According to a new study, light to moderate alcohol consumption is associated with an improvement in memory. Researchers also found that light alcohol consumption reversed brain shrinkage.

Of course, this isn’t the first time I’ve told you that happy hour has health benefits. And it’s also not the first time I’ve warned you NOT to reach for the wine or beer when you’re getting ready to raise your glass.

Red wine does have some health benefits, but it also typically has way, way too much sugar. Same goes with beer. Spirits don’t have nearly as much. And they offer just as many benefits.

I’ve mentioned this study before, but it bears repeating: Researchers studied 67 men with high cardiovascular risk and assigned them to consume either red wine, non-alcoholic red wine, or gin for four weeks. BOTH of the alcohol groups (red wine and gin) improved good HDL cholesterol levels, compared to the non-alcoholic red wine group. So the benefits are in the alcohol itself, not in the red wine specifically.

So go ahead and mix yourself a nice martini. And offer up a toast to good health—and great memories.