Before You Decide To “Do What You Love,” Know That Your Salary May Dictate Your Drinking Habits
Up until this moment, I assumed that how much we as humans drink depended on how sad we were, or lonely, or maybe even happy (though, pouring toxins into your body that give you a hangover the next day is surely a weird way to “celebrate”). However, according to new research, our mood may not dictate our drinking habits so much as our cash flow.
NPR reports that our income levels play a bigger role in how much wine we sip or beer we guzzle than we originally thought.
The study, which was published online in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, had researchers interview 672 pairs of twins. During these interviews, participants were asked about their socioeconomic status (SES), which included their household income and education level. They were also asked how often they drink booze.
The verdict? People with more money tend to drink more alcohol. However, participants in the lower SES group showed way more variability in their drinking patterns than those in the high-SES group. Those with a higher SES status were more likely to keep their drinking habits moderate, yet consistent. Since participants were twins, researchers were able to determine that their habits were really due to their money rendering habits, not genetics.
This all kind of makes sense, because you need money to buy alcohol. And those who don’t have money are probably less frequent, but heavier drinkers because when they get ahold of some extra cash and buy alcohol, you can bet they’re going to go hard, since they don’t know when they’ll be boozing again. Also, their infrequent binging may make them forget how bad a hangover can feel.
Either way, older research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests that the ability to drink alcohol is an evolutionary advantage. So we should all be freakin’ proud of our physical capability to down whatever it is we like to drink — a couple beers, a fine scotch, or our nightly three glasses of wine.