Alcohol-Related Risky Behavior Patterns and Their Association With Alcohol Use and Perceived Alcohol Stigma in Moshi, Tanzania

Duan Zhao , M.Sc.G.H.,a, Joao Ricardo Nickenig Vissoci , Ph.D.,b,c, Blandina T. Mmbaga , M.D., Ph.D.,d,e, Abu S. Abdullah , M.D., Ph.D.,a,b & Catherine A. Staton , M.D., M.Sc.G.H.b,c,*
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The Kilimanjaro region has one of the highest rates of reported alcohol use per capita in Tanzania. Alcohol-related risky behaviors pose substantial threats to the health and well-being of alcohol users and the people around them. This study seeks to understand how alcohol-related risky behaviors co-occur with other risky behaviors.


Latent class analysis (LCA) was applied to examine alcohol-related risky behaviors. The optimal number of latent classes was confirmed by using model fit indices. Negative binomial models were used to test latent classes and their association with harmful and hazardous drinking and perceived alcohol stigma. With the model defined, we explored each class’s drinking patterns and risky behavior patterns.


A total of 622 (60% male) of 841 participants were included in these analyses because they drank alcohol at least once in their lifetime. Three classes of risky behavior patterns were identified: Class 1, “Limited risk behaviors” (59.7%); Class 2, “Primarily foolish behaviors” (25.6%); and Class 3, “Pervasive risk behaviors” (13.1%). Class 3 had the most alcohol use quantity and frequency. No association between classes and alcohol stigma was found. Compared with males, females are less likely to be classified in Class 2 and 3.


Three different classes of risky behaviors became apparent and were distinguished by gender, age, and personal alcohol use. Our findings suggest a potential role for personalized interventions based on latent classes specifically to reduce risk behaviors.