Alcohol affects men and women differently

Last Updated: Monday, July 29, 2013 - 16:35

New York: Alcohol has different effects on men and women as gender influences which emotions drive heavy drinkers to drink, and how they feel the next day, a new study has found.

For men, anger drove drinking. A man who felt angry was more likely to drink the next day than a man who didn`t feel as enraged, researchers said.

They found that neither happiness, nor sadness had particular sway as a trigger for drinking in one gender over the other.

Researchers also said that neither of the genders who drink heavily effectively drown their sorrows with alcohol.

"Some people say they want to use alcohol to improve their mood, and that`s not what we found happening," said Valerie S Harder, lead author of the study from the University of Vermont.

The study looked at how drinking affected participants` moods. Researchers guessed that people would report less anger or sadness after drinking, and more happiness a day after drinking. However, the data showed the opposite.

"In fact, it works the other way: People report less happiness as they use more alcohol," said Harder.

Both men and women reported feeling less happy the day after drinking, but the effect was much stronger for women.

To track people`s moods and drinking habits, Harder and her colleagues used an interactive voice-recordings for the 246 study participants who had been flagged by a primary-care doctor as having a possible drinking problem.

The study participants went through an alcohol treatment programme. They were then called in every day for six months and reported their moods, stress level and drinking habits. The participants` ages ranged between 21 to 82 years.

The researchers concluded that stress can change a person`s mood and their drinking habits.

PTI



First Published: Monday, July 29, 2013 - 16:34

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