YOUNG fans of Love Island may be more likely to get hooked on booze, a study suggests.
Researchers found the reality TV show features more alcohol than other prime time programmes.
And they warn seeing sexy contestants knocking back drinks encourages viewers to consume more.
University of Nottingham boffins analysed 112 episodes of reality TV screened in the UK in 2018.
It included Love Island, Geordie Shore, Celebrity Big Brother, Made in Chelsea and Towie.
All 112 episodes, aired from January to August, contained alcohol or alcohol content, such as wine glasses.
It featured in 2,212 one-minute intervals, or 42 per cent of all intervals studied.
Love Island is the booziest show
Love Island had more one-minute sections with boozy content than any other show.
Brands of alcohol were most prominent on Geordie Shore, with Smirnoff Ice being the most common.
Viewing figures indicate alcohol will have been seen 4.9billion times across the 112 episodes.
And 580million of these are thought to have been seen by children under the age of 16.
Smoking is most prominent on CBB
Tobacco use or references appeared in 20 episodes, predominantly Celebrity Big Brother.
Love Island no longer features any smoking following viewer complaints.
All of the reality TV shows aired after the 9pm watershed but are available on catch-up services.
Study leader Dr Alex Barker called for tighter regulation of alcohol and tobacco use on TV.
He added: “Tobacco and alcohol content shown on TV has an effect on the uptake of smoking and alcohol use in young people.
More than half a million people in the UK are believed to be addicted to alcohol, says Alcohol Change UK.
The health rules on Love Island
While there may be a lot of booze shots, Love Islanders aren't allowed to get drunk.
Liana Isadora Van-Riel, who was on the 2016 show told The Sun Online: "You're allowed one or two drinks a night, either wine or beer, no spirits".
She mentioned that on most nights people just drink one or just have a cup of tea.
However on a "big night" like eviction night contestants will typically have two drinks.
Following a huge wave of complaints surrounding the constant smoking in the villa after the series in 2017, ITV producers cracked down ahead of the fourth season last year.
In the 2018 series bosses installed a ban on smoking fags inside the villa, with those wishing to light up having to exit the villa and go to a designated smoking area.
Only one islander is able to head to the smoking shelter at a time, in a bid to stop so many of the contestants taking up a smoking habit due to the social element.
WHAT IS ALCOHOL MISUSE?
ALCOHOL misuse is when a person drinks to excess regularly.
That means drinking more than 14 units a week – the level recommended by the NHS.
A unit of booze is 10ml or 8g of pure alcohol.
That's the amount of booze the average adult liver can process in one hour.
A strong pint of beer contains three units, while a lower strength lager is just over two units.
The weekly recommendation of no more than 14 units, equates to six pints or 10 small glasses of wine.
Meanwhile, a 750ml bottle of red, white or rose, is 10 units.
That's 1.5 units in a small glass of wine, just over two in a medium glass and three in a large glass.
A single measure of vodka, gin and other spirits is one unit, while a double shot is 1.4 units.
“Initiation of smoking and alcohol use at a young age is a strong risk factor for dependence and continued use in later life.
“Our analysis shows that reality television programmes are a major source of exposure to young people in the UK and is likely to be a contributor to smoking and alcohol uptake by young people.”
The findings are published in the Journal of Public Health.
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