Binge Drinking Rises with Unemployment: UMiami Study

Categories: Survey Says
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Don't think just because incomes tend to dwindle during times of job loss that folks still aren't shelling out cash for booze. In fact, a new University of Miami study claims that incidents of binge drinking tend to rise with state unemployment levels. The study flies in the face of previous studies that claim, basically, we're all now too poor to drink.

Conducted by Michael French, professor of health economics and director of the Health Economics Research Group at the UM College of Arts and Sciences, the study finds the insistence of problematic drinking increases with unemployment rates, and even those who are employed during tough economic times tend to drink more.

"We are one of the first to show that, even though incomes decline for most people during an economic downtown, they still increase problematic or risky drinking," French tells MLive.com.

The study found that the trend holds true across gender, age, and ethnicity, but finds that African-Americans and all people between 18-24 tend to drink more as unemployment rises. In addition, the more children that live in your household, the more likely you are to binge drink.

Interestingly, people with a higher income are more likely to binge drink during a downturn, and those that are employed are more likely to drive after drinking.

"The way we explain this is even people who don't lose their jobs drink more during an economic downturn, pushing up more episodes of driving under the influence," says French.

The study was published in Health Economics and analyzed consumption data from 2001 to 2005.

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4 comments
Anthonycorps
Anthonycorps

Sad thing is this guy studied the obvious. When I was unemployed I drank too because life sucked. I now have a job and I still drink because I never thought I would end up where I am now. At my age(25) it feels like I all I have is good times with my friends that involves drinking. Ive been voting ever since ive been able to and things have only gotten worse. Which is why I, like many other people my age will not be voting the next election. Voting has done nothing. We need an entirely new government but no one who has the power to reach a large number of people has the balls to say it. Ive said it before, if I was a celebrity I would definitely be targeted and monitored because of my opinions and my choice to use my celebrity to try and be the change I wish to see.

women shoes
women shoes

no wonder the republican states have so many tea baggers that watch foxnews. they all is drunk and on welfare.

Harry Husker
Harry Husker

A great follow up study would be, what percentage of an unemployment check goes to binge drinking? Imagine the outcry from the Tea Party when they find out that taxpayers are picking up the bar tab on a twelver of Old Milwaukee for the unemployed to drown their sorrows. There'd be some fireworks for sure.

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