Evolutionary Approach on Binge Drinking : Meta-Analytic, Experimental and Modeling Investigations of Excessive Alcohol use and Other Risks.

Abstract : Binge drinking is a worldwide and multi-faceted phenomenon usually defined as having 4 or more alcoholic beverages per occasion for women or 5 or more drinks per occasion for men. Binge drinking also underlies many other risky behaviors (inter- and intra-personal violence, drunk driving, sexual risks, etc.) as well as negative health consequences (cancers, cardiovascular diseases, etc.). The three-fold nature of binge drinking (biological, psychological and sociological) encompasses a wide variety of areas ranging from endocrinology to social and cognitive psychology. Getting an overview of the problem, however, is made difficult by the very fact that few evolutionary analysis have been suggested. Here, we propose to frame the problem from a costly signaling perspective. What type of signals do the binge drinkers send? To whom is the signal directed? Are those signals courtship displays or threats to competitors in order to assure reproductive success or maintain social status? How can contextual factors influence drinking rates? Exploring causes, correlates and predictors of binge drinking and its interdisciplinary nature should serve as a relevant starting point to then reveal the necessity of an evolutionary framework.To address these questions, I first started by shaping an evolutionary-based approach to binge drinking taking into account current data and theories (Chapter 1). I then ran various laboratory studies (eye-tracking) and online experiments aiming at evaluating the mating and intra-sexual signals that binge drinkers send to others (Chapter 2 and 3). Based on those results, I implemented a field prevention program intended at reducing alcohol’s attitude and expectancies among French high school students as well as an online replication (Chapter 4). In parallel, I conducted an extensive meta-analysis of women’s drinking behaviors and other risks across the menstrual cycle to understand the endocrine influences at play (Chapter 5). Finally, I analyzed the life-history theory of risky drinking at a population level through a hierarchical modeling of binge drinking frequency and intensity from 1997 to 2006 across the United States (Chapter 6). Taken together, those findings can help to build the foundations for an inter-disciplinary approach to binge drinking and create specific micro-targeted prevention programs.
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Jordane Boudesseul. Evolutionary Approach on Binge Drinking : Meta-Analytic, Experimental and Modeling Investigations of Excessive Alcohol use and Other Risks.. Psychology. Université Grenoble Alpes, 2018. English. ⟨NNT : 2018GREAH004⟩. ⟨tel-01872568⟩

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