Skipping meals and binge drinking is on the rise in college campuses
A troubling trend seems to be sweeping US colleges campuses and it is known as “drunkorexia.”
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Drunkoresia is a risky diet-related behavior that could involve food starvation or intense exercise before drinking or deliberately purging during or afterwards. The idea is to ‘make room’ for alcohol calories by cutting down food or to increase the buzz generated by drinking.
A new research suggests that the practice is far more common than thought especially in college campuses where many young men and women are putting their health at risk by skipping meals and binge drinking.
The study involved more than one thousand students from University of Houston and asked them to fill out a survey. The survey was aimed to find how many of them were involved in heavy drinking at least once in the past month. Heaving drinking was described as having four or more drinks in one sitting for women and five or more drinks for men.
Researchers found that eight of 10 students had at least one episode of heavy drinking in the last 30 days alongside any of risky behavior linked to drunkoresia including restricting calories to save them for heavy drinking, doing excessive exercise to compensate for calories consumed from drinking or drinking so much that one becomes sick and vomit. The surprising thing was the phenomenon was not limited to any gender. Both men and women were found engaged in the activity.
“Our study suggested that males are just as likely, if not more likely, to engage in these behaviors. We suspect that this is because men, in general, tend to engage in riskier drinking behaviors than women.” Lead researcher Dipali V. Rinker from University of Houston told Medscape.
Drunkoresia can have negative effects on both body and behavior. Drinking on empty stomach causes an individual to get intoxicated at much faster rate or you can say without any food in stomach alchohol travels straight to the bloodstream and increases the likelihood of losing control on oneself.
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“Potential outcomes may include less inhibition that could lead to more negative alcohol-related consequences,” said Rinker and this can lead to “more problematic drinking and alcohol-related consequences such as blackening out, getting into fights, passing out or driving under the influence.”