The effect of alcohol on different European cultures

Sunday, 14. October 2018 - 14:15

Sceptre/Wiki Commons

An international survey into the effects of alcohol has revealed that Germans get more argumentative when drunk, while Swedes are more likely to get amorous.

The survey, conducted by YouGov across eight European countries, show how Europeans use alcohol. One thing that the citizens of Germany, Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden and Spain have in common is that beer is the most popular alcoholic beverage, although cocktails came second in Germany and France. The Italians prefer sparkling wine. The majority of respondents first tried alcohol between the ages of 15 and 17.

Where there were clear national differences was in the effects of drinking alcohol. Nearly one in four Germans admitted to getting into an argument while drinking, while almost two out of five Swedes had sex with someone at least once, just because they were drunk.

Of all the countries surveyed, the Spanish drink the most often and believe in the health benefits of alcohol.

While Southern Europeans tend to start drinking later, they consume it more frequently, as part of their everyday life, than do Northern Europeans. More than one in eight Spaniards say they drink alcohol every day, and only 12% drank it less than once a month. The French and Italians were the next most frequent consumers. By contrast, only 2% of Finns, Norwegians and Swedes consume alcohol daily, while 22% to 24% drink it less than once a month.

YouGov speculated that the results might show that frequency of consumption is affected by the perception of the effects of alcohol on health. For example, 52% of Spaniards believe that some types of alcohol have health benefits, while only 26% of Germans agree.

Celebrations and taste are the main reasons for alcohol consumption. People in Germany, France, Italy and Norway like to drink to celebrate, while in Denmark, Finland, Sweden and Spain, taste is the main driver. The majority of respondents from all countries, except Spain, prefer to drink alcohol at home. Spaniards prefer going to a bar.

YouGov is an international data and analytics group, with 6 locations in 23 countries and panel members in 38 countries. YouGov has one of the ten largest market research networks worldwide.