The More Friends You Go With, The More You Drink

Life & Love | Gerren Keith Gaynor | 03/13/2015 | 04:45 PM EDT

Study says traveling with a posse leads to more alcohol consumption

If you travel with a posse during your night excursions, chances are you’ll end up drinking more than usual.


A new study found a correlation between the amount friends you go with and the amount of drinks you have per hour. Turns out, the bigger the crew the larger the drink count.


For the study, 183 young adults from universities participated in a questionnaire experiment in which they were sent six text messages from 8 p.m. to 11 a.m., with a link for them to complete question entries on their smartphones, including questions about how many drinks they had and how many friends were present.


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Those who did not drink or failed to fill out questionnaires were excluded from the study, according to the New York Daily News.


Results determined that both men and women hung out with less friends on Thursday evenings, where drinks per hour decreased from 8 p.m. to midnight. But most had the greatest number of friends on Saturdays between 10 and 11 p.m. (average of five to six), where the drinks per hour also peaked.


Men peaked at an average of 2.5 drinks per hour between 11 p.m. and midnight on Saturdays, and women had 1.9 drinks per hour during the same period.


“The conclusions we can draw from our study is that friends and drinking are related,” study author Johannes Thrul told Reuters. “To really show that friends cause more drinking we would need a different study design, for example randomly assigning different numbers of friends to individual participants and assessing their resulting drinking behavior.”


Thrul, however, noted that it’s still too soon to say exactly what’s behind the connection between larger groups and higher drinking volume. Not to mention self-reports of drinking patterns can be met with considerable flaws.


Still, she says, nightlife seems to encourage drinking. Social status has a bigger impact in larger groups and the size of the group can increase the strength of the norm to drink, the Daily News points out.


In other words, if you’re looking to drink less the last thing you should do is hang with a large group of people and in the nightlife scene. One may be the loneliest number, but it can guarantee that you consume fewer cocktails.

(Photo: Neil Guegan/Corbis)

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