It seems that in the last decade the drinking habits of Americans have changed in such a way that alcohol consumption went down for men and up for women.
According to a statement given to the press on November 23 by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, after examining the data from an annual study of alcohol consumption between 2002 and 2012, researchers have found out that women are close to drinking just as much as men do.
Scientists ring the alarm, arguing that women are more likely to develop alcohol-related disease, like neurotoxicity, cardiovascular disease, liver inflammation and even cancer.
In a period of 10 years, alcohol consumption increased with 4.6 percent for women and decreased with 1.3 percent for men. So if in 2002, 44.9 percent of women were answering that they had been drinking in the past 30 days, in 2012 the number of respondents who said yes increased to 48.3 percent. In exchange, for men, if in 2002 57.4 percent have had a drink in the previous 30 days, in 2012 only 56.1 percent were drinking at least once a month.
For college students, the figured remained about the same during the studied decade while for 18 to 25 year old young people not in college, the alcohol consumption behavior has changed in the same way, with a significant increase for female population and decrease for male.
Compared to 2002, in 2012 there were also 4 percent more young men who responded that they were mixing alcohol with marijuana while the figures for female mixing alcohol and weed stayed at 10 percent.
Researchers were not able to explain the changes, arguing that future research is needed in order to identify the psychosocial and environmental factors that could have implications upon this issue.
Some of those could even be economic in nature, given the fact that by the last few years covered by the study were exactly the years of the worst financial crisis in decades. This could have led to a greater necessity for drinking from women, who were the biggest victims of austerity measures.
To end in a more positive note, there was a funny saying that applies to the findings of this study: in the past girls were cooking like their mothers but now they are drinking like their fathers.
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