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Why men are more likely to drink alcohol than women?

On this page, we explore why men are more likely to drink alcohol than women. It is commonly known that women drink less and have a lower prevalence of drink problems than men. This is after the gender differences in the relationship between level of drinking and drink problems have been investigated by many researchers (such as Ely)

Reasons why men are more likely to drink alcohol than women

Physiological difference between men and women

Physiologically, women and men are significantly different, and this has a direct link to why two genders consume alcohol differently. Women are generally smaller than men, with less overall body weight. Though smaller, they have higher storage of body fat than men.

According to Vertava Health, alcohol is stored in body fat, so women retain more alcohol than men, leading to longer effects of alcohol when drinking. Additionally, alcohol resides within the water in our bodies (mostly within our blood). Being smaller, women generally have less water and consequently experience higher concentrations of alcohol in their blood when consuming similar amounts to their male counterparts.

Another scientifically proven difference between women and men is that men benefit from increased production of the alcohol dehydrogenase enzyme. This enzyme helps break down alcohol in men before it even reaches the bloodstream, making them more tolerant to alcohol.

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Alcohol advertisements targetting

Men are mostly targeted by alcohol advertisements as they are known to be the biggest consumer of alcohol. MEn are targeted in this manner, through men magazines or magazines mostly bought by men, sport events, tand v programmes that men love.

Role-model and alcohol

Seeing other men drink within the communities and family setup, young men’s desire to drink alcohol is increased. Young men look up to their closest men as rolemodels.

How men are affected by alcohol vs women?

  • Men are approximately two times more likely to binge drink than women.
  • Among all drivers involved in fatal motor-vehicle accidents, men are about twice as likely as women to have been intoxicated at the time of the accident.
  • Men consistently have higher rates of alcohol-related hospitalisations than women.
  • Men commit suicide more often than women (by about four times) and are much more likely to have been drinking alcohol when they committed suicide.
  • Drinking alcohol increases the risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon in men.
  • Too much alcohol increases the chances of erectile dysfunction and infertility.
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