Photo: Lara Robby/Studio D
Ever since Italian physicians discovered its curative powers about 900 years ago, liquor has been used to treat ailments from the plague to PMS. We found three modern spirits—plus one mixer—with a background in medicine, and all worth prescribing for the cocktail hour.

1. Rx: St. George Absinthe Verte

Active ingredient: Grand wormwood

Traditional application:

In addition to wormwood's stomach-calming properties, it contains thujone, a chemical compound once believed to stimulate libido.

Directions for use: Though absinthe is customarily served with a sugar cube, pour St. George with an ice cube instead, which will release the spirit's essential oils—star anise, lemon balm, tarragon—as it melts.

2. Rx: Bluecoat American Dry Gin

Active ingredient: Juniper berries

Traditional application: Juniper is a diuretic, and has been known to relieve menstrual bloating, gas, and cramping.

Directions for use: Mix with a delicate tonic (see #4) to highlight its bright citrus notes. Skip the lime. <

3. Rx: VeeV Spirit

Active ingredient: Açaí

Traditional application: The açaí berry is thought to pack more antioxidants than pomegranates or red wine.

Directions for use: VeeV's ripe-fruit aroma belies a swift kick. Try it with cucumber and club soda, or mixed with açaí juice.

4. Rx: Q Tonic

Active ingredient: Handpicked Peruvian quinine

Traditional application: Ancient Incans prescribed quinine for malaria; today, it's used to relieve minor spasms (leg cramps, eye twitches).

Directions for use: Sip this clean, bittersweet tonic over ice, with a squeeze of lemon, or with your best spirits (gin, vodka, rum...)—11/2 ounces to each bottle.
As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.


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