If you find that you're happier when you have a drink or two, you're not alone – and you're not necessarily drunk, either.
There really is a connection between drinking and happiness.
I was enjoying my own glass of scotch on the rocks one evening as I thumbed through the pages of the journal Addiction when I came across a study that looked at the effects of drinking on mood.
And it found that people who drink moderate amounts regularly aren't drunks. They're not sad and lonely. And they're not anxious or depressed, either.
In fact, researchers found that people who DON'T drink are the ones who are likely to have problems.
Now, there are still people out there who don't want you to enjoy a few drinks, and they dismiss studies like these. In fact, they'll usually try to tell you that the reason the teetotalers look worse off is because some of them are former alcoholics, and the same problems that led to the drinking are still present when they're not drinking.
In other words, they still blame drinking for problems even when they show up in people who aren't drinking.
But they're wrong.
The researchers in the new study tracked some 38,000 people in Norway, and separated the former heavy boozers from those who simply don't drink, and never did – and found that the non-drinkers are still at greater risk of anxiety and depression.
It's hardly surprising. Drinking is beneficial on a number of levels, and a lower risk for depression is just one of them. Moderate drinkers on the whole tend to be healthier, live longer and even have high higher intelligence. Some research has shown that drinking can help fight impotence, too.
So unless you have a problem with the bottle that you know you can't control, I can't think of one good reason for you not to enjoy regular moderate drinking.
I suggest you begin by raising a toast to your favorite doctor.