Study: When a state becomes more liberal, drinking increases

One study proposed collectivities — kinship, work, religious or political groups — can influence individual health lifestyles. Religion, for example, has been linked to healthier lifestyles by discouraging alcohol and tobacco consumption while encouraging exercise and personal hygiene.

The researchers found U.S. average per-capita consumption of alcohol, especially wine and spirits, rose over time from the late 1960s until its peak in the mid-1980s and then fell. Per-capita alcohol consumption between states varied widely.

Nevada, the highest alcohol-consuming state, periodically consumes more than three times more alcohol per capita than Utah, the lowest-consuming state, the study said.

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