Every year, more than 100,000 people respond to the Global Drug Survey, which aims to get to the heart of how, where, when, why and what drugs are being taken worldwide. This year, the study found some interesting results about alcohol and whether different kinds of drinks produce different emotional outcomes. There are common myths, such as that gin makes you teary and whiskey causes fights. “Alcoholic drinks had much stronger associations with different emotions
like feeling confident or feeling sexy or having more energy. But at the same time, we were also getting much more of the negative emotions out of that group of drinks such as feeling ill, feeling restless and, perhaps most worrying of all, high levels of feeling aggressive,” said Professor Mark Bellis, director at Public Health Wales, who co-authored the study.
While there is a correlation between emotional outcome and the type of alcohol consumed, the researchers emphasize that there are many other factors involved. “This study isn’t about causation. We’re quite clear that it could be the effects of, for instance, the levels of alcohol in spirits. It could equally be that people may be drinking those spirits in a particular way, like
drinking them to get drunk, drinking them a lot faster and drinking a lot more. And it could be the setting, we know for instance red wine is often drunk more with food and that may change things.”
The study also observed that heavy drinkers were more likely to choose drinks associated with negative emotions, such as aggressiveness, whether drinking while out or at home. With about 40% of violence in England and Wales being related to alcohol, these results show the importance of understanding drinking patterns and behavior on a personal level. With Alcohol Concern estimating a yearly cost of £3.5 billion to the US from alcohol harm, understanding the emotional connection to drinking is key in addressing alcohol misuse.
Source: The Naked Scientist
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