Saturday, 29 August 2009

Drinkers have more fun

Somehow I doubt whether Sir Ian Gilmore and Don Shenker will be latching on to this piece of research that shows that teetotallers suffer higher levels of depression.

Those who abstain from alcohol are also more likely to lack social skills and have higher levels of anxiety, it was claimed.

Non-drinkers even have more mental health issues than those considered heavy drinkers, the survey found.

One reason why non-drinkers were more gloomy could be that they have few friends, the study suggests.

“We see that this group is less socially well-adjusted than other groups,” said research leader Dr Eystein Stordal, from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
Sounds a bit like something from the Department of the Bleeding Obvious, but the fact it’s from gloomy, prohibitionist Norway is all the more reason for the miserabilists to give it credence.

I can respect vegetarianism, as it is following a sincerely-held (although in my view misguided) principle, but I can never get teetotalism at all – it seems to be a case of deliberately donning a hair shirt and cutting yourself off from one of life’s greatest pleasures for fear of beginning a slide down the slippery slope. Not being bothered about alcohol is one thing, but actively avoiding it on principle something else entirely.


  1. Good posting. I have put a brief item about it on my blog with a link to your posting.

  2. Slightly contradicting my point, I do actually know two people who claim to steer clear of alcohol but who seem quite happy and well-adjusted. However, it is significant that neither of them ever seeks to preach to others about alcohol - it seems to be just an individual lifestyle choice.

  3. Agree, a good posting that I too have added to my blog with a link.

  4. I don't think that your friends' lifestyle choice contradicts what you say at all. As you say, they don't make a point of ostentatiously abstaining, unlike people whom I have seen dramatically throwing their hands over glasses to prevent wine being poured, usually accompanied by a contrived shocked look. A friend I often meet in my local drinks nothing but diet Coke. He doesn't contradict your blog either.

  5. "Scientists found that the happiest people were drinkers who averaged two glasses of wine, a bottle of beer, or a shot of spirits a week."

    That IS teetotalism!

  6. At the risk of being accused of pedantry the article doesn’t point to booze being the source of happiness, which it so clearly is. It points to the nonsense that being sociable is a source of happiness which leads to drinking as a social norm within western society. Frankly the report is bollocks.


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