It’s no secret that most of us around here enjoy a nice glass of wine (or seven), but how we drink can say a lot about us. How often do we drink? What drinks do we prefer? How much do we order? As it turns out, science has the answers and can help us learn a bunch about our drinking habits.
Glow, a startup by the creators of PayPal, is a new app for women focused on using data to predict and explain your reproductive health. Think period, fertility, and pregnancy tracking. As part of their research, Glow polled their 4 million users about their drinking habits, and while some of the results were expected, some were pretty surprising.
For most of us, the desire to drink isn’t constant; the study shows that interest varies by day of the week, and unsurprisingly, Saturdays are the most common day to drink, and the least common is Tuesday. Interest in drinking varies seasonally, and women are more likely to want to drink in the summer months when it’s warm outside. Be prepared for your alcohol budget to skyrocket and ask dad for some extra money, because July is the most common month to get your drink on, which may be explained by holidays like the 4th of July, as well as hot weekends for barbecues, tubing, and laying out by the pool, all of which require copious amounts of alcohol to be enjoyable. However, you’ll probably get back on track in January, which is the least common month for drinking due to New Year’s Resolutions. Don’t worry, you’ll be pounding wine again in February, because we all know promises are made to be broken.
Here comes the interesting part of the data: how drinking affects your sexual behavior. If you don’t want to go home with the guy from the bar, data from the Glow study suggests you should stick to a maximum of 2 drinks, because consuming 3 or more drinks is linked to “risky” sexual behavior. At 3 drinks, you’re also less likely to have protected sex (eeeek!) or use the pull-out method or Plan B as their primary form of birth control, which is much less effective. The women that stuck to 2 drinks though were much more likely to use the pill or a condom as their primary birth control, so sadly, it looks like it’s about time to change my bar habits. If you’re regularly taking the pill and not concerned about the number of shots you take at the bar, you can still be affected – 55 percent of women reported that alcohol consumption caused them to regret a sexual decision they made, so it appears that beer (or tequila) goggles really are a thing you should be worrying about.
So why do we drink? 28 percent of female drinkers say they’re likely to drink on a special occasion, but honestly I’m a little surprised that number is so low, because any birthday without champagne seems like a real downer. However, 11 percent of us say that we’re likely to drink most days, which I can relate a little too much to. The typical female survey respondent also takes about 4-6 drinks to get really drunk, but about 5 percent of women are lightweights and done at one drink, while 15 percent are heavyweights and need at least seven. Apart from “whatever a guy buys us at the bar,” women also have strong drink preferences with – surprise, surprise – wine coming in as the top go-to at 25 percent, slightly followed by hard liquor at 23 percent. 22 percent of women are snoots like me and prefer fancy cocktails, while 14 percent are “cool girls” and would willingly order beer. Ew.
Thanks to this super insightful poll, hopefully you learned a little something about your drinking habits, such as why you seem to have so many happy hours in July or why you ended up in bed with a 4 last night. Learning more about your drinking habits and why they occur can not only make you a more responsible drinker, but you’ll have more fun knowing that you’re making the decisions that you won’t regret the next morning. So here’s to going out on summer Saturdays and ordering two glasses of white wine – honestly, I was going to do that anyway, but I’m glad to know that science approves. .
[via Business Insider]