Alcohol consumption and alcohol-related problems in Afro-Caribbeans and south Asians in the United Kingdom

Alcohol Alcohol. 1993 Jan;28(1):1-10.


Data from published sources and unpublished surveys in the U.K. show that average alcohol consumption is lower in Afro-Caribbean men and women than in native British men and women. The proportion of heavy drinkers is also low in Afro-Caribbeans. Consistent with these consumption data, hospital admission rates for alcohol-related problems are lower in Afro-Caribbeans than in the general population. Among South Asians (Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis) average alcohol consumption is lower than in the native British population but alcohol-related morbidity rates for some South Asian communities are higher than for the general population. The reasons for these high morbidity rates are not clear. Consumption is higher in Sikhs than in Hindus or Muslims, and heavy spirit drinking appears to be especially common among Sikh men. Alcohol-related psychiatric admission rates for South Asians have risen since 1971, and appear to be especially high in Sikh men. The high alcohol-related morbidity rates in this group are a priority for further research and efforts at prevention.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alcohol Drinking / epidemiology*
  • Alcohol Drinking / psychology
  • Alcoholism / epidemiology*
  • Alcoholism / psychology
  • Asia, Central / ethnology
  • Black People
  • Black or African American / psychology
  • Black or African American / statistics & numerical data*
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison*
  • Ethnicity / psychology
  • Ethnicity / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • United Kingdom
  • West Indies / ethnology