British researcher Jose Iparraguirre found binge drinking is not just a phenomenon among youngsters; people over 50 engage in the behavior as well, especially divorced, single or separated men. Iparraguirre look at the social and economic factors that prompted binge drinking in older adults and the risk such behavior poses over time.

Iparraguirre analyzed data from the English Longitudinal Survey of Aging (ELSA), a multidisciplinary study that “surveys different information from a group of community dwellers in England.” Iparraguirre looked at wave 5, the most recent data collected 2010-11, the Tech Times reported. For the transitional analysis, the researchers looked at the wave 4 data.

Iparraguirre analyzed it against the British drinking guidelines: three or four drinks for men per day; two or three drinks for women.

Some of the findings from the study, which has been published in the journal BMJ, include:

  • People are less likely to indulge in harmful drinking by age.        
  • There is a nonsequential association between age and harmful drinking risk in males, with a peak near 65 years.
  • Factors such as smoking and education are directly associated with the risk for harmful drinking.    
  • Depression is not linked to harmful drinking in males and females.
  • Divorced, single or separated men are at a greater risk of harmful drinking.    
  • Responsibility of caring for others reduced the risk of binge drinking in females.

The research had a few limitations as well. The researcher did not compare the data for England with the rest of the U.K. In addition, the variation in the characteristics of people in a certain area was not taken into account and the subject population was only a small representation of a large group of older people.