The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism writes that binge drinking means drinking so much alcohol within about two hours that blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels reach 0.08g/dL. For women, this generally occurs after about four drinks, and for men, this occurs after about five drinks. Binge drinking is associated with car crashes and injuries. And, over the course of time, binge drinking can damage the liver and other organs. In a news release on Feb. 6, 2013, Washington University in St. Louis has reported, Lower drinking ages lead to more binge drinking.
According to a study by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, people who grew up in states where it was legal to drink alcohol before 21 years old are more likely to be binge drinkers later in life. First author Andrew D. Plunk, PhD, has said, “It wasn’t just that lower minimum drinking ages had a negative impact on people when they were young. Even decades later, the ability to legally purchase alcohol before age 21 was associated with more frequent binge drinking.”
It was found in this study that people who lived in states with lower minimum drinking ages weren’t more likely to drink more alcohol overall or to drink more frequently than those from states where the drinking age was 21, however, when they did drink, they were more likely to drink heavily. This effect was found to be most pronounced among men who did not attend college. The researchers have said the findings should be a warning to those who advocate lowering the minimum drinking age.