Study Shows Women Now Drink Nearly as Much Alcohol as Men

December 31, 2016

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. consumption / kənˈsʌmp ʃən / (n.) – the amount used
Example: This car’s gas consumption is too high.

2. zoom in (on something) / zum ɪn / (phrasal v.) – to give special attention to something
Example: We were supposed to discuss world history, but we zoomed in on the history of Asian civilizations.

3. prevalence / ˈprɛv ə ləns / (n.) – the condition of being widespread
Example: The prevalence of underage drinking is alarming.

4. workforce / ˈwɜrk fɔrs / (n.) – the total number of people who are working or who can work
Example: Every year, millions of young professionals enter the workforce.

5. dominate / ˈdɒm əˌneɪt / (v.) – to control the majority of something
Example: Men dominate the IT industry.


Read the text below.
A recent study shows that women are now drinking as much alcohol as men—and are increasing their health risks as a result.

A study from Australia’s National Drug and Alcohol Research Center examined the changes in the ratio of male to female alcohol consumption over the years. The research zoomed in on how the drinking habits of men and women have become similar over the last three centuries. They found that among people born between 1991 and 2000, the number of males and females who drink alcohol is almost equal.

The research showed that historically, more men drank alcohol than women. For example, men born between 1891 and 1910 were twice as likely as their female peers to drink. However, the number of female drinkers became almost equal to the number of male drinkers among those born between 1991 and 2000.

Among the reasons for the increased prevalence of drinking among women is the change in women’s roles in society. The number of women in the workforce increased after World War II, and as women began entering industries that were once dominated by men, they also began adopting drinking habits such as after-work drinking. In relation to this finding, the US National Statistics also found that women who hold management or professional positions drink more than other women.

However, with the increase of women’s alcohol intake comes the increase of drinking-related health problems among them. According to the US National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), alcohol-related problems affect women more easily than men because of biological differences. Excessive drinking raises risks for liver inflammation, heart disease, and breast cancer in women.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you agree that women drink as much as men nowadays? Why or why not?
·         Aside from work culture, what do you think are other reasons why women drink more nowadays?

Discussion B

·         Describe the drinking culture in your country (i.e., on what occasions, with whom, etc.).
·         In your opinion, should an individual give up alcohol entirely to take care of his/her health? Discuss.

December 31, 2016