Not just munters getting smashed and high

New evidence suggests that it isn’t just munters getting smashed and high, rather it shows that drinking and drug taking in adults correlates with higher childhood intelligence.

Finnish researchers gathered data on 3,000 fraternal and identical twins and found that the sibling who was the first to develop verbal ability—speaking words, reading and using expressive language—also tended to be the first to try alcohol and to drink more heavily throughout adolescence. Verbal development may be correlated with social intelligence; the verbally precocious twin also had, on average, more friends, and could be more likely to end up in social situations where alcohol is present: “Good language skills reduce the likelihood of peer rejection… higher social activity predicts more frequent drinking in adolescence,” write the authors.

First to speak means first to booze and drugs?

Earlier speaking age is also associated with better academic performance throughout middle and high school and a higher chance of graduating from college—and achieving higher levels of education is also correlated with higher alcohol consumption. The authors hypothesize that intelligence is correlated with curiosity and a desire for new experiences: “Cognitive performance and reading abilities in childhood are related to higher stimulation-seeking tendencies.”

My experiences are certainly not like this study.

Drawing on the results of the National Child Development Study, which tracked for 50 years all British babies born during one week in March 1958, Kanazawa found that kids who scored higher on IQ tests grew up to drink larger quantities of alcohol on a more regular basis than their less intelligent peers. He evaluated other factors, including religion, frequency of church attendance, social class, parents’ education and self-reported satisfaction with life, and found that intelligence before age 16 was second only to gender in predicting alcohol consumption at age 23.

In Kanazawa’s model, illicit drugs constitute another evolutionarily novel experience—and he (and others) have also found a link between high IQ and experimentation with drugs. In Kanazawa’s study, the higher a respondent’s IQ before age 16, the more psychoactive substances he or she had tried by age 42. Another study found that 30-year-old women who had earned high scores on an IQ test at age five were more than twice as likely to have smoked weed or used cocaine in the previous year; men who had scored highly on IQ tests as children were 50 percent more likely to have recently consumed amphetamines or ecstasy.

Again not my experience, having never taken amphetamines nor ecstasy, and only  very mild drinker.

Possibly smart kids go on to have jobs that allow them to spend more money on expensive things like booze and drugs?


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  • OrphanIsland

    It also makes them an obvious mark for dealers / friends, who would assume they have money to spend.

  • Mr_Blobby

    Yes drugs do cross social lines, but the violence still seems to be around the munters.

    Wonder who funded this useless study.

    • Pissedoffyouth

      Not really just around the munters – Nigella comes to mind.

      • Bunswalla

        Frequently, in my case. Often around bedtime.

    • Cowgirl

      It’s the munters who go on to abuse drugs and alcohol to the extent that they become violent.

  • blokeintakapuna

    Only users lose drugs.

    • Pissedoffyouth

      yeah nah

    • Bunswalla

      Haha of course Betty Swallocks would upvote that one. Where’s Mary Huff when we need her?

  • tspoon

    When I checked out my myer/briggs profile it turned out that people similar to myself, although possessed of reasonable amounts of intelligence and reasonably introspective to boot, did exhibit a greater tendency toward alcoholism than other types of people. Whatevs. Cheers.

  • Cowgirl

    I think the key word is ‘precocious’ – if you’re precocious in one area, you’re likely to be in others.
    Also more intelligent people I think tend to seek out experiences and more have a more enquiring mind, therefore might be more likely to try psychoactive drugs, in search of experience and deeper meanings to things. I think if you’re looking for ‘something more’ than just the usual, then it goes you’ll be inclined towards such things.
    I’m sure we don’t need a study to tell us that creative, intelligent people dig drugs, man.

  • ratmuncher

    Boozing is linked to peer pressure. Those who have an independent streak and an aversion to part of the herd, will make their own choices. Also It will be creative types with high IQs rather than all high IQs who will be more likely to experiment with mind altering drugs. Mathematical and logic base IQs like lawyers and accountants prefer cocaine and P, Cam’s pick of income is correct.