Bottoms Up: Individualists More Likely To Be Problem Drinkers
ScienceDaily (Nov. 21, 2008) — What makes residents of certain states or countries more likely to consume more alcohol? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, high levels of individualism lead to more problem drinking.
"We looked at the extent to which consumer levels of individualism (vs. collectivism) were related to their beer and problem alcohol consumption," write authors Yinlong Zhang and L.J. Shrum (both University of Texas-San Antonio).
"We found that the higher a region scored on valuing individualism, the greater their beer and alcohol consumption, and this was true even when taking into account the effects of other variables such as income, climate, gender, and religion."
The researchers found that people with more interdependent mindsets were less likely to over-consume when they were with peers. "The results suggest that people with collectivistic cultural orientations tend to be more motivated to regulate impulsive consumption tendencies than those with individualistic cultural orientations, which in turn makes them less likely to engage in beer or alcohol consumption," the authors conclude.