Not all alcoholic beverages are created equal. At least with regard to the emotions they elicit, according to a multi-country study conducted by researchers from the Public Health Wales NHS Trust and Department of Psychiatry, King's College London.

The study team noted that spirits are more associated with aggression while wine and beer appear to relax the consumer.

Their aim in conducting the research is to determine links between particular emotions and different types of alcohol, and whether these emotions differ by socio demographics or influence people's choice of alcoholic drink.

The study involved nearly 30,000 participants from 12 countries whose ages ranged from 18 to 34. The method used was through an anonymous online survey.

“Alcoholic beverages vary in the types of emotions individuals report they elicit, with spirits more frequently eliciting emotional changes of all types,” wrote the researchers.


About 29.8 percent of respondents said they feel “aggressive" when drinking spirits that include vodka, rum, tequila and gin.


Meanwhile, over half of the respondents reported feeling “confident” and 42.4 percent felt “sexy” when consuming hard drinks.


Researchers concluded that aggression, illness, restlessness and tearfulness were elicited by other types of drinks.


On the other hand, participants who drank red wine and beer felt “relaxed.” Compared to white wine, however, drinking red wine makes people tire easily.


Researchers concluded that aggression, illness, restlessness and tearfulness were usually associated with other types of drinks.

However, "the odds of feeling the majority of positive and negative emotions remained highest among dependent drinkers irrespective of setting," the researchers noted.

There was also a stronger relationship between women and every type of emotion, apart from aggression, which was stronger among males. Further, the setting mostly contributed to the type of alcohol that may be consumed.

“Young people will often drink spirits on a night out, whereas wine might be drunk more at home, with a meal,” said Professor Mark A. Bellis, one of the researches, as quoted from BBC.


Though the findings were the result of an observational study that no firm conclusions can be made, the researchers said it could be used in understanding alcohol misuse. MIMS