Socioeconomic Status and Alcohol Consumption

Research has found that people of higher socioeconomic status are more likely to consume alcohol than are those of lower status.

Another research study, this time in Australia, has also found socioeconomic status (education or income level) to be associated with alcohol consumption. Investigators received 2,349 completed mailed questionnaires from adults age 18-76 living in Melbourne. They found that adults of higher socioeconomic position were more likely to consume alcoholic beverages frequently. Those of lower status tended to drink less frequently but in higher quantities on each drinking occasion.

Frequent moderate consumption of alcohol (beer, wine and spirits) is associated with better health and greater longevity than is either abstaining or abusing alcohol.


  • Giskes, K., et al. Individual and household-level socioeconomic position is associated with harmful alcohol consumption behaviours among adults. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 2011, 35(3), 270-277.

Filed Under: Economics

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