The State-by-State Drinking Habits of America

Drinking Habits

If we were to ask you which state you thought was the heaviest consumer of alcohol in 2012, what would you guess? A party destination, right? Florida, Louisiana, California—or what about Sin City’s home state of Nevada?

Nope, all wrong.

The state that consumes (far and away) the most alcohol is none other than the Granite State. What, you’re not up on your state nicknames? Okay… the Live Free or Die State. Yep, it’s New Hampshire.

And if that comes as a surprise to you, it’s just the tip of the iceberg in a new research report by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). The study reveals quite a few interesting trends in America’s drinking habits—not just in recent years, but all the way back to the 1850s.

Overall per capita consumption of alcohol has been climbing steadily since the early 1990’s. In the most recent year for which there is data (2012), consumption climbed 2.2 percent over the previous year to reach 2.33 gallons per capita. The NIAAA cites 2.1 gallons as a goal for a healthy society, but the last time we were that stingy with our pour was in 1961. Still, our current levels are far below the nation’s booziest period of 1980/81 (2.76 gallons per person).

Click here to read more.

Tyler Wells Lynch

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