Liz Day over at Discovery asks, “Do intelligent people drink more?”:
Childhood intelligence, measured before the age of 16, was categorized in five cognitive classes, ranging from “very dull,” “dull,” “normal,” “bright” and “very bright.”
The Americans were revisited seven years later. The British youths, on the other hand, were followed in their 20s, 30s and 40s. Researchers measured their drinking habits as the participants became older.
More intelligent children in both studies grew up to drink alcohol more frequently and in greater quantities than less intelligent children. In the Brits’ case, “very bright” children grew up to consume nearly eight-tenths of a standard deviation more alcohol than their “very dull” cohorts.
Researchers controlled for demographic variables — such as marital status, parents’ education, earnings, childhood social class and more — that may have also affected adult drinking. Still, the findings held true: Smarter kids were drinking more as adults.
Intelligent readers are invited to leave their own hypotheses as to why this may be so in comments, if they’re able to type coherently.