News24

Tattooed people 'are heavier drinkers'

2012-04-17 08:02

Paris - French scientists said on Monday they have found evidence proving the stereotype that people who sport tattoos and piercings are heavier drinkers.

Alcohol tests performed on about 2 000 young men and women frequenting bars in the west of France showed a strong correlation between body art and boozing, they said.

"Pierced and/or tattooed individuals had consumed more alcohol in bars on a Saturday night than patrons in the same bars who were non-pierced and non-tattooed," said a study for the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.

Previous research had shown that people with tattoos and piercings were more likely to engage in unsafe sex, fighting and heavy drinking, but this was the first such project to measure more alcohol per litre of exhaled breath.

The subjects were tested as they left 21 bars in four cities on four different Saturday nights on the Atlantic Coast of Brittany, an area with high alcohol consumption, said the researchers.

The men and women were asked whether they had tattoos or piercings and then asked to take a breathalyser test.

Tattoos and piercings are relatively new phenomena in France, and under-18s need permission from their parents.

The men tested were on average 20.6 years old and the women 20.2 years.

Of 1 081 men interviewed, 903 had no body art and an average measure of 0.18 milligrams of alcohol per litre of exhaled air, lower than France's 0.25 drink driving limit.

The figure increased to 0.19 in the 98 men with tattoos, 0.23% for the 53 men with piercings, and 0.26 for the 27 men with both.

Of the 884 women, 537 had no body art and an average alcohol measure of 0.12, which rose to 0.14 for the 124 with tattoos, 0.20 for the 138 with piercings, and 0.24 for the 85 women with both tattoos and piercings.

Researcher Nicolas Gueguen of France's Universite de Bretagne-Sud, said the findings showed that teachers, parents and doctors should consider tattoos and piercings as potential "markers" for alcohol abuse.

But fellow scientist Myrna Armstrong from Texas Tech University, who reviewed the paper, cautioned against a "tendency to see a tattoo or piercing and automatically profile or stereotype that individual as a 'high-risk person'."

Comments
  • Tashie.lc1 - 2012-04-17 08:29

    Bull. I drink heavily and have no tattoos. Although now I might get one and use it as an excuse....

  • MiniCoups - 2012-04-17 08:44

    Since when did science start trying to prove stereotypes? My tattooed friends and I drink in equal amounts. And also, if France is more conservative in their adoption of tattoos then it stands to reason that the findings are isolated to that country. A study in New Zealand would perhaps be completely opposite.

  • Shaun.groenewald - 2012-04-17 08:49

    Stupid study tbh...

  • CombiChrist - 2012-04-17 09:05

    what a crock of shaaaiit! I drank heavily before my tattoos too.

  • Tex - 2012-04-17 09:09

    News24 you’re big fat Troll,just like the Mary Jane article you wrote a couple of months ago, stereotypical casting, with poor statistical sampling.....TSk…..TSk

  • ruan.cowley - 2012-04-17 09:10

    what utter rubbish.

  • Suzi - 2012-04-17 09:11

    What utter crap! I have 5 piercings (none of which are visable) and body art, and I'm ALWAYS the designate driver within my crowd of friends who have no ink or iron!!

  • LouSteyl - 2012-04-17 09:39

    Really? Slow news week? Most of the tattooed people I know, including myself, don't drink. 2000 young people is not really a decent sample for this kind of research. Perhaps we should first question a study before we bother publishing?

  • Samantha - 2012-04-17 10:08

    what crap, i have a tatoo and i hardly ever drink-

  • Jean-pierre - 2012-04-17 10:15

    Ive good tattoos and i dont drink at all

      Tony Lapson - 2012-04-17 12:14

      I've good drinks and I dont tattoo at all

      Tony Lapson - 2012-04-17 12:14

      I've good drinks and I dont tattoo at all

  • Karen - 2012-04-17 11:45

    Total load of rubbish!I know quite a few tatooed friends who dont drink at all.Speculation speculation

  • Alaric - 2012-04-17 13:10

    I have over 30 Tattoos and I do not drink at all!

  • katelyn86 - 2012-04-17 13:53

    Pretty dum statement considering all their research was done in a pub *confused face* i know some people covered in bodybart and they wont even step foot into a pub… #RidiculousStats

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