If you've succumbed to sticking around at the bar for "just one more," you're not alone.
A new study published in the journal Addiction reveals that the number of drinks a person has increases along with the number of friends in their drinking group. In other words, the more people at your Happy Hour, the more booze you're likely to consume.
The study collected data from internet-based questionnaires that participants responded to on their smartphones. Nearly 200 young adult drinks in Switzerland were prompted to respond every hour while they were out drinking. The participants were asked to report the number of drinks they had consumed as well as the number of friends present while they were out. Men were more influenced to imbibe as their friend count hiked, but women were affected, too.
Since most young people imbibe in a social context, the ways bars and parties affect drinking levels is of particular interest to researchers. And this survey study is one of the first to collect realtime observational data -- data from real social gatherings as they are happening -- rather than recreating a party atmosphere in a lab setting (difficult to pull off!) or surveying partiers after the fact.
Next time you go out for an office happy hour, you might want to consider with whom you're drinking alongside what's actually in your glass.
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