Genetic Characteristics May Increase Risk for Alcohol Problems

A recent study has only confirmed the effects of a low level of response, or LR, to increase the risk for alcohol abuse and heavy drinking among those with a genetic history of alcoholism. Professor of Psychiatry at the University in San Diego, CA, Marc A. Schuckit, says the effects of low LR factors of heavy drinking occurring later in life take place through a sequence of steps, according to Medical News Today.

The study examined boys and girls in the U.K. and smaller samples in the United States and on subjects that were younger as well. Studies showed a variety of results from the amount the person was likely to consume to achieve their desired result to peer influences. For some, the LR factor encourages coping with life’s problems. The entire procedure uncovered evidence regarding an individuals’ propensity for heavy drinking, thus increasing their risk for problems with alcohol.

Schuckit says the question remains as to why some adolescents drink more than others and that the low level of response is almost 60 percent genetic makeup. When you compare other countries and the way their drinking habits and differences in culture impact the use of alcohol, results can be of less importance in their culture or environment but the biological factors, such as metabolic factors and absorption of alcohol, should have consistent results across all cultures. There may be factors that are especially important such as religious or political viewpoints that affect your likelihood for alcoholism or that cause you to become more susceptible to drinking heavily.

Doctors continue to investigate these cross-cultural studies and that will help them solve the mystery of genetic influences among heavy drinkers.