Too much caffeine may cause you to see things that aren't there.
Have you been seeing or hearing things when you drink coffee? Well, researchers now say that people who drink too much coffee are more likely to experience hallucinations.
Scientists at Durham University found that people who drink more than seven cups of coffee a day, or equivalent to that, are three times more likely to see things that are not there.
A high caffeine intake can come from coffee, tea, chocolate or energy drinks and pills.
Two hundred students were studied and asked about their daily caffeine intake and stress levels. The results showed that the students with the highest caffeine intake claimed they heard voices and felt like there were ghosts present among them.
“This is a first step towards looking at the wider factors associated with hallucinations,” said Simon Jones of Durham University's Psychology Department. “Given the link between food and mood, and particularly between caffeine and the body's response to stress, it seems sensible to examine what a nutritional perspective may add. Hallucinations are not necessarily a sign of mental illness. Most people will have had brief experiences of hearing voices when there is no one there, and around three per cent of people regularly hear such voices.”
The researchers say that when the body is under stress, it releases a hormone called cortisol. This hormone is released even more in stressed out people that have recently had caffeine. The scientists explain that this extra hormone release is what may link the intake of caffeine to hallucinations.
This research is published in the academic journal Personality and Individual Differences.
The next time you think you may “see dead people” or hear voices in your head, you might want to slow down on your caffeine consumption. You may be drinking enough coffee to raise the dead!
Source: Durham University News Release