How To: Spot a Heavy Drinker with Eye Contact

Spot a Heavy Drinker with Eye Contact

Did you know that your face shows others how much alcohol you drink? Whether you've never had a sip of booze with those around you or you're known as the party animal of the group, the genes that shape your appearance also show others just how much you enjoy liquor. Pinpointing the big drinker in any setting is easy to determine: you just need to make eye contact.

How Eyes Can Give Away Your Drinking Habits

We've known for quite a while that our eye color is determined by that of our parents' dominant and recessive traits, but what you might not realize is that each color is made of different material. Those with blue and green eyes feature less melanin and fewer particles, while darker irises are exactly the opposite. And, as many researchers discovered, our eye color has an effect on our reaction speed, motor skills, and perception.

Image by Laurence Vagner/Flickr

Jonathan F. Bassett and James M. Dabbs, Jr. conducted a study to see if an individual's eye color could go a step further and predict their drinking tendencies and history. Because previous studies had uncovered that those with darker-colored eyes are more sensitive to external stimuli, the duo tested whether this held true when it came to alcohol.

Image by TheGiantVermin/Flickr

Armed with little information about their participants, the researchers uncovered whether those with light eyes—which they define as eye colors other than brown and black—were more likely to drink and have a history of alcohol abuse. They found that 42 percent of their light-eyed participants were heavy drinkers, while only 38 percent of those with dark eyes drank copiously. Individuals with lightly colored eyes also admitted to drinking more than their dark-eyed counterparts in the previous week and month, meaning they consumed more alcohol on more days year-round.

So, when you glance into a stranger's eyes and notice their brilliantly blue irises, keep in mind that they're probably a fan of frequent imbibing—and that they're more likely to abuse alcohol.

Why Eye Color Matters

Because those with blue, gray, green, or any light irises are less sensitive than those with dark eyes to external substances, they are more likely to develop an addiction. Brown and black eyes mean individuals require less alcohol to become intoxicated, and are able to feel its effects more rapidly. Their lighter-eyed opposites, however, tend to drink larger amounts of liquor to feel that same buzz and, as a result, can become dependent.

Image by OaklandNative/Flickr

Whether you fall into the light or dark category, you can utilize this information to both make an educated guess about the tendencies of those around you, and also see whether or not you deny the odds.

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Cover image via A of DooM/Flickr

1 Comment

Thinking about everyone I know personally, this couldn't be further from the truth, but those are just the people I know.

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