Big Drinkers: How BMI, Gender and Rules of Thumb Influence the Free Pouring of Wine
Smarandescu, Laura, Douglas M. Walker, and Brian Wansink (2014), “Big Drinkers: How BMI, Gender, and Rules of Thumb Influence the Free Pouring of Wine,” International Journal of Drug Policy,” 25:1060-1065.
24 Pages Posted: 10 Aug 2014 Last revised: 29 Apr 2017
Date Written: 2014
Background: This research examines free pouring behavior and provides an account of how Body Mass Index (BMI) and gender might lead to the overpouring, and consequently the overconsumption – of wine.
Methods: An observational study with young adults investigated how BMI and gender affect free-pouring of wine over a variety of pouring scenarios, and how rules-of-thumb in pouring affect the quantities of alcohol poured by men and women across BMI categories.
Results: For men, the amount poured was positively related to BMI. However, BMI did not affect pours by women. The use of the “half glass” rule-of-thumb in pouring reduced the volume of wine poured by over 20% for both men and women. Importantly, this rule-of-thumb substantially attenuated the pours by men at high BMI levels.
Conclusions: Increasing awareness of pouring biases represents an early and effective step toward curbing alcohol consumption among men, and especially those who are overweight. Additionally, using a simple “half glass” rule-of-thumb may be an effective way to curb overpouring, despite non-standard glass sizes.
Keywords: Alcohol Pouring, Gender, BMI, Rules of thumb, Wine pouring, Drinking norms
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