Heavy Drinkers Live Longer than Nondrinkers, Maybe Because They're More Fun

People who drink heavily have lower mortality rates than those who don't drink at all, according to a new study. Why? Could be because they're way more fun at parties. No, really! Science says so!

Scientists have long found that "moderate" drinkers, who consume 1-3 alcoholic beverages a day, have the lowest mortality rates. But this new study—which is being published in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research under the title "In Your Face, Ian MacKaye"—seems to indicate that abstaining from drinking at all increases a person's risk of dying, as heavy drinkers have lower mortality rates than abstainers.

But why is that the case? One possibility is that heavy drinkers get more of the social benefits of alcohol use than nondrinkers—i.e., the gnarly parties that are vital to your mental and physical health. (And your sexual health, am I right? Parties! Who's with me?) Abstainers, as Time's John Cloud wrote last year, are at a higher risk of depression than drinkers, which makes sense, because I've been the only sober person at a party, and let me tell you, it is depressing.

Now, obviously, alcohol can ruin your relationships, and your career, and destroy your liver, and make you barf on the subway and say rude things to policemen. But it's still better for your health than confronting the world, and social situations, sober.

The Takeaway: If you're not drunk right now, you are probably going to die tomorrow.

[Time]