Spirits make you feel 'aggressive and sexy'

Alyssa Bailey
November 24, 2017

This compared to about 2.5 per cent of red or white wine drinkers and 7 per cent of beer drinkers reporting feelings of aggression.

All drinkers in the survey had imbibed a full range of alcoholic beverages - spirits, beer, red and white wine - within the previous year.

Hard liquor causes the wildest mood swings, the researchers found.

Public Health Wales surveyed nearly 30,000 people aged between 18 and 34 from 21 countries to determine their emotional responses to different types of alcoholic drink and found spirits were the most likely to make us unhappy.

Advertising "pushes the positive emotions people might look for from drinking, but it is important to understand the negative ones as well", said researcher Mark Bellis.

Co-author Professor Mark Bellis, who is also Public Health Wales' director of policy, research and global development, said: "For centuries, the history of rum, gin, vodka and other spirits has been laced with violence".

"This study highlights the importance of understanding why people choose to drink certain alcoholic drinks and what effect they expect these drinks will have on them", Dr. John Larsen from Drinkaware told the BBC. Those behind the study want to make people aware of how drinkers can build a tolerance to alcohol.

Reminding people of the emotional downsides of alcohol use through public-health campaigns could help curb problem drinking, he said, "so that people are not overly swayed by just the positive messages, which perhaps they watch or listen to every day".

Red wine drinkers reported the highest level of feelings of tiredness, according to the data from nearly 30,000 people from 21 different countries. The survey ran from November 2015 to January 2016.

If you drink the hard stuff, you're much more likely to feel energized, confident, and sexy; those three emotions clocked in at 58.36 percent, 59.08 percent, and 42.42 percent, respectively.

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Moreover, spirits have a higher alcohol content. "People get that rush", he said, "and of course it damps down the consideration of the repercussions of some of the actions they might take". "This can result in a quicker stimulating effect as blood alcohol levels increase", Bellis was quoted as saying by "The Telegraph".

They speculate that people's emotions are also likely to be affected by their mood before drinking, the speed and quantity of alcohol they drank, mixed drinks and activities such as dancing and socialising.

Confidence and sexiness make up the middle ground here; 27.88 percent reported feeling confident and 25.20 percent reported feeling sexy.

"Alcohol is alcohol no matter the form, and acts on the brain in the same way".

It is worth also bearing in mind that there are compounds apart from alcohol in different drinks. Women were more likely to say they experienced any type of emotion while drinking alcohol, with the exception of aggression.

But those good times come at a cost.

"The odds of feeling the majority of positive and negative emotions also remained highest among dependent drinkers, irrespective of setting".

Men were more likely to report any alcoholic drink with feelings of aggression than women were, for example.

Our findings suggest that people who are heavier drinkers more commonly report energy and confidence from drinking, but the negative emotions increase in this group as well. "People might drink spirits in shots deliberately to get drunk quickly", Bellis said. Rum, Vodka and Gin were strongly associated with feelings of aggression, illness, sadness and restlessness.

Beer for the blues and wine when you're feeling fine?

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