Different types of alcohol trigger different emotional responses

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It wasn't all bad news for hard alcohol - almost 60 percent of respondents said the drink made them feel energetic and confident. Rum, Vodka and Gin were strongly associated with feelings of aggression, illness, sadness and restlessness.

All drinkers in the survey had imbibed a full range of alcoholic beverages - spirits, beer, red and white wine - within the previous year.

"They clearly lay out that sometimes people will use alcohol to regulate their emotions - not only negative emotions, but positive emotions as well", Krakower said. And the results were based on answers of 30,000 participants who consumed beer, red and white wine.

'For centuries, the history of rum, gin, vodka and other spirits has been laced with violence.

In fact, drinking spirits tends to draw out more negative feelings than other types of alcohol, say the United Kingdom authors.

One third of respondents to the study were female, with the researchers noting that women were more likely than men to report each emotion as a result of drinking a single type of alcohol.

"Spirits are often consumed more quickly and contain much higher concentrations of alcohol". People were most likely to say they felt relaxed or exhausted after drinking red wine. In the heaviest drinking group, over 60 percent reported feelings of aggression from drinking.

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A quarter of individuals said drinking spirits induced tearfulness, compared with 17% of red wine drinkers and 9% of beer and white wine drinkers. "These expectations and motivations for drinking will influence how people actually behave when they have been drinking, and may in some situations lead people to drink at levels likely to cause them harm".

It is clear from the study that people associate a range of emotions - good and bad - with drinking different types of alcohol.

The study also asked how strong the respondents' dependency on alcohol was and found that people with a higher dependency were more likely to say they felt all emotions.

Results of the survey were published online November 21 in BMJ Open.

"This study highlights the importance of understanding why people choose to drink certain alcoholic drinks and what effect they expect these drinks will have on them", Dr. John Larsen from Drinkaware told the BBC.

Men and women also react differently to the same drinks.

They speculate that people's emotions are also likely to be affected by their mood before drinking, the speed and quantity of alcohol they drank, mixed drinks and activities such as dancing and socialising. So manage to solve the problem of increasing the number of people with alcohol dependence and the level of violence in society, he added. That might explain why people feel more emotional when drinking spirits. Although these are part of the difference in taste between drinks, little consideration has been given to what other affects they may have on the drinker.

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