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Young shun booze as over 60s drink up

Today’s younger generation are increasingly choosing to drink less with the over 60s drinking twice as often, according to a recent poll by Channel 4.  

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One in four young people would rather spend time online than go out drinking.

The poll, carried out by Comres on behalf of Channel 4 News, saw 1,119 people questioned on their attitudes toward alcohol.

It revealed an increasing trend of young people not only to be choosing to cut back on drinking but of many abstaining completely with one in four 16 to 30 year olds said to be teetotal.

When asked what stops them drinking, 26% of the over 30s polled said they didn’t want it to “affect their judgement” while a further 43% cited health and fitness concerns as the reason for curbing their alcohol intake.

40% of those polled said it was considered “embarrassing” to get really drunk, while one in four of the under 30s polled also said they would prefer to stay in and chat to people on the internet than go out drinking.

In stark contrast, it was the over 60s who appeared to be the biggest advocates for hitting the town.

This age group tend to drink nearly twice as often as the under 30s: an average of 2.68 days of the previous week, compared with an average of 1.36 days for their younger counterparts.

The older generation are far more likely to drink every day, with 15% admitting to doing so over the previous week, compared to just 1% of 16 to 30-year-olds with this attributed largely to drinking with an evening meal.

The vast majority of over 60s polled agreed that it was embarrassing when someone their age got “really drunk”.

Interestingly, it has become less socially acceptable for young people to binge drink with 40% of 16 to 30-year-olds agreeing its was embarrassing when someone their age gets really drunk with nearly half adding that vomiting as a result of heavy drinking was “never acceptable”.

One of the key reasons for younger people choosing to drink less was a fear of not “making it” with competition for jobs and student debt making them less able to “let go” with rebellion said to have taken a back seat.

Another deterrent affecting younger people’s attitudes to drinking was the prevalence of social media and the risk of being tagged in “drunk” photos, a concern for 13% of under 30s polled.

In terms of religious beliefs, 10% of young people said their own religious beliefs were a factor in preventing them from drinking, compared to just 2% of over 60s.

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