Some psychologists believe that we turn into one of four character types when we are drunk.
Ernest Hemingway – someone who is barely affected by excess alcohol
Mary Poppins – someone whois friendly and compassionate
The Nutty Professor – a quiet type transformed into a confident extrovert
Mr Hyde – someone who becomes menacing and hostile.
The researchers, at the University of Misoouri-Columbia, found that most people who fell into the last category were women!
The largest numbers of drunks, 40%, equally divided between men and women, fall into the Hemingway category who were very similar whether sober or intoxicated with no apparent impact on their intellect or personal organisation.
Previous studies show that conscientiousness and intellect are affected negatively by alcohol so thesis something of a surprise.
Nutty Professor types found it hardest to keep things together. This group comprises 1/5 of us, mainly men.
Mary Poppins types would be compassionate listeners and look after you but only make up 15% of the population. They suffer the least detriment to their conscientiousness and cognitive ability.
Mr Hyde types are to be avoided. They are hostile and become more disagreeable with each drink showing the dark side of their personality. Most likely to suffer blackouts or be arrested for being drunk and disorderly and suffer more harm to themselves. Unfortunately a quarter of us fall into this category and 2/3 are women.
Scientists have known for a long time that 50% of alcoholism cane be explained by genetics. Researchers have now discovered that the RSU1 gene, which seems to light up in response to rewards such as chocolate, is also associated with alcohol abuse.
Other research suggested that blue-eyed people were more prone to alcoholism.