ANCHOR LEAD: WHAT’S ATTRACTIVE ABOUT MIXING CAFFEINE AND ALCOHOL? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Drinking highly caffeinated beverages along with alcohol is popular on college campuses and among the twenty-something set, but the practice is very dangerous. A recent University of Florida study found that those who engaged in this practice were three times more likely than those who drank alcohol alone to be drunk, spent more time in bars, and were more likely to drive after leaving the bar. Roland Griffiths, a caffeine expert at Johns Hopkins, says the mechanism of the interaction between caffeine and alcohol hasn’t been identified.
GRIFFITHS: We really don’t know. It’s quite speculative at this point. So one of the hypotheses is that the caffeine antagonizes or reverses some of the perceptual effects of alcohol and that people can consume more alcohol than they would otherwise and not understand the extent to which they’re drunk. :22
There’s no question the practice is more dangerous than alcohol alone. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.