What's the root of happiness? According to a recent study from the American Sociological Association, for college students, binge drinking could play a role.
Defined as consuming more than four drinks in one sitting for women, and more than five in one sitting for men, the study, which surveyed almost 1,600 students from a liberal arts college in the Northeast and was presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in Denver recently, concludes that college kids who binge drink tend to be happier than college kids who avoid the urge to get totally shitfaced.
As Jennifer LaRue Huget writes for the Washington Post, 64 percent of respondents copped to their binge drinking ways - with the study determining that these students were typically far more satisfied and happy with their social lives than students who avoid the college ritual of getting drunk and falling down.
From the Washington Post:
You'd think it might be the other way around, that kids who aren't happy would be drawn to binge drinking. But co-author Carolyn Hsu, an associate professor of sociology at Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y., found that binge drinking is associated with status on campuses and that binge-drinking students tend to be happier with their social lives than others.
They found that students who were in high-status groups -- wealthy, white, male, participating in Greek life -- were more satisfied socially than those in low-status groups -- less wealthy, racial minorities, female, lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender/queer (LGBTQ), not participating in a fraternity or sorority.
Coming soon: Study shows that douchebags tend to be happier than non-douchebags.
In all seriousness, the study also concluded that students typically engaged in binge drinking not to drown sorrow or unhappiness, but rather to lift their social status by acting the way the cool kids on campus are known to. According to the Washington Post, the study "found that low-status students could boost their social satisfaction so it was about the same as that of high-status students by binge drinking. Conversely, high-status students who didn't binge drink had lower levels of social satisfaction than did high-status binge drinkers."