ASPPH logo


Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

More TV Ad Exposure Linked to Higher Levels of Youth Drinking, Says BU

The more brand-specific alcohol advertising that young drinkers are exposed to, the higher their consumption of those brands, according to a new study led by researchers from Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH).

The study, in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, found an association between past-year exposure to advertising, measured in what the researchers called “adstock” units, and consumption of the brands advertised. Every 100 adstock-unit increase in exposure was associated with an increase of six drinks consumed during the past 30 days, while exposures of 300 or more adstock units were associated with an increase of 55.7 drinks.

The study estimated that the advertised brands accounted for almost 47 percent of all alcohol consumed by the young drinkers, and that there was a “dose-response” relationship between exposure to ads and drinking levels.

Dr. Michael Siegel, the study’s co-principal investigator and professor of community health sciences at BUSPH, said the study suggests that advertising influences “how much kids drink, not just what they drink.

“This has important implications because we know that the amount of alcohol consumption is associated with increased risks of harm, including motor vehicle fatalities, suicide and violence. We believe these findings should prompt a reevaluation of the industry’s self-regulatory framework, in order to reduce advertising exposure among underage youth,” he said.

To read more about the study, go to: