Study Looks at Relationship Between Alcohol Advertisements and Alcohol Use in New York City Black Neighborhoods
"Association Between Residential Exposure to Outdoor Alcohol Advertising and Problem Drinking Among African-American Women in New York City," American Journal of Public Health: Researchers Naa Oyo Kwate and Ilan Meyer -- both professors of sociomedical sciences at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health -- studied 139 black women between ages 21 and 49 who lived in Central Harlem, New York City. Participants reported having at least one alcoholic beverage per month in the past six months and had no formal history of alcohol or substance abuse. Thirty-one percent of the participants were found to be "problem drinkers" -- engaging in certain behaviors such as feeling the need to drink first thing in the morning or feeling guilty about drinking. "We found that, on average, exposure to each alcohol ad in a woman's residential block was associated with a 13% increase in the odds of being a problem drinker," Kwate said. "This finding is significant for public health because residents in the study area were highly exposed to alcohol advertisements, and the associations between exposure and outcome persisted after we controlled for other potential causes of problem drinking," Kwate added. Researchers recommend further investigation to determine other possible causes of problem drinking and the role exposure to alcohol advertisements might play in causing the drinking problems (Kwate/Meyer, Mailman School of Public Health release, 1/12).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.