Washington D.C. Nov 3: A new study has revealed that men and women who rarely or never exercise have higher chances of abusing alcohol than those who exercised frequently. In the study, researchers surveyed 5,002 African-American men and women and found that those who did not engage in physical activity at all or only occasionally had between 84 percent and 88 percent higher odds of abusing alcohol.(Read: New model to predict drug side-effects on you)

 Survey participants were drawn from the National Survey of American Life (NSAL), a study that took place between 2001 and 2003 and aimed to identify racial and ethnic differences in mental disorders and other psychological distress, including those used by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The study used the DSM-IV definition of alcohol abuse, which is defined as drinking that has negative social, professional and/or legal consequences.

 Study author April Joy Damian of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health said that because the NSAL study was essentially a snapshot that was taken at one point in time, they cannot say that engaging in physical activity would prevent people from developing alcohol use disorder or that alcohol use disorder could be treated with physical activity. Damian added that given that alcohol use disorder had a high rate of co-occurrence for depression and anxiety, it merits further study all around, for African Americans as well as others.