Social Media Might Affect Your Drinking Habits

Do you have a habit of Facebooking and drinking? If yes, you might want to put your smartphone away before your next glass of wine: A new study from the University of Sydney, Australia, revealed that social media can skew drinking habits in either direction.

The study found that young people binge drink more when they see the Facebook profiles of their hard-partying peers — but interestingly, people who are told that those profiles are often exaggerated also tend to cut their alcohol consumption by 50 percent.

Evidently, young people drink to keep up with what they perceive to be the amount of alcohol their friends consume — but access to social media profiles could be artificially skewing the facts. You know how sometimes it looks like all your friends are always having more fun than you on Facebook? It apparently also sometimes looks like everyone is getting #turnt way more than you — but in both cases, what you;’re seeing is probably an inaccurate representation of the facts. It turns out that people really don’t want to drink that much; they only want to drink as much as their friends are drinking. So guess what happens when they’re told that their friends aren’t drinking all that much? You got it: They start drinking less, too.