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3 Cups of Coffee Increases Hallucinations

CmdrTaco posted more than 5 years ago | from the but-they-ARE-out-to-get-me dept.

Medicine 628

PearsSoap writes "The Telegraph and other sources are pointing out a study on 200 students which has found that a high caffeine intake can cause visual and auditory hallucinations, and can make people think that others are 'out to get them.' The abstract (and full version if you have access) is available. 'The volunteers were questioned about their caffeine intake from products including coffee, tea, energy drinks, chocolate bars and caffeine tablets.'"

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South Park (5, Funny)

chill (34294) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450307)

The study consisted of watching every episode of South Park featuring Tweak.

So (4, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450319)

Sooooo...The results of this study show that excessive intake of caffeine makes you high-strung? Fascinating.

Re:So (4, Interesting)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450597)

There is a big difference between feeling anxious and hallucinating. I'm just surprised it took only 3 cups.

RTFA (4, Insightful)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450661)

...200 students...

They clearly just haven't built up adequate resistance yet.

Re:So (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26451069)

I'm surprised as well. That must have been 3 cups of seriously strong triple espresso's. I accidentally suffered from a caffeine overdose once (only anxiety attacks), but I drank an insane amount of coffee. Just 3 cups hardly wake me up in the morning.

Re:So (1)

sdpuppy (898535) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451117)

Hey that was MY research that I did 5 years ago, but I couldn't publish because they were going to suppress the results and discredit me - but now I know what they were planning all along - to STEAL my research! But what the don't know - wait a piece of tinfoil fell off my window - oh no now they see what I've been writing! I better hide!

I've got to finish my coffee first.

:-)

Re:So (5, Funny)

Anonymous Monkey (795756) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450765)

I'm not high strung. I'm fine. I'M FINE OK...Hay, did you see that...Never mind...Their it is again! I said I'm fine. You know my computer screen is flickering a lot...Why are you looking at me like that? Can you open this can of Coke for me, my hands are shaky...I'll need a straw too, I dropped the last can...Actually I had a shaking fit and crushed it. Spilled Coke all over, people looked at me funny as I was licking it off my desk. Or it could be because they are out to get me. Why dose my desk shake like that? Stop saying that, I said I'M FINE! Hay did you see that?

Re:So (5, Funny)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450815)

Are you OK? Maybe you need to sit down for a few minutes. I'll buy you a coffee.

Re:So (1)

ravenshrike (808508) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450887)

My computer screen was flickering too, but I was playing The Witcher, so at least I have an excuse.

Re:So (5, Informative)

Caspase9 (1442471) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450823)

"Caffeine intake was positively related to stress levels and hallucination-proneness, but not persecutory ideation."

Persecutory ideation = paranoia

This means that coffee doesn't make you paranoid....

way to go /.

60 cups (4, Insightful)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450325)

I remember reading somewhere that 60 cups of coffee would supposedly yield the same level of hallucinations as 1 dose of LSD....I don't know about anyone else, but I think 60 cups of coffee would mess me up a lot more than 1 dose of LSD...

Re:60 cups (1)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450407)

That's 14 litres of water. You'd be in serious danger of water intoxication by then.

Re:60 cups (4, Funny)

MindKata (957167) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450691)

"That's 14 litres of water"

They said, "cups of coffee", no mention of adding water ;) ... although I admit, it may get a bit chewy by the 60th cup full. 8)

Re:60 cups (4, Informative)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450705)

The LD50 for caffeine is 10g, but serious side effects exist after just a few g. I know, because I've felt them. 3g at one hit isnt fun by anybody's standards.

And yes, hallucinations is a serious side effect, as is palpitations, arrhythmia,nauseousness, mania, depression.

Re:60 cups (4, Funny)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450893)

Insomnia....

Re:60 cups (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450939)

Mod parent up.

More dangerous than the hallucinations are the other health issues. A few years ago I was having issues with heart palpitations due to caffeine and stress. It's scary as hell when your chest has a funny sinking feeling, as if it missed a beat.

Re:60 cups (1)

IanCal (1243022) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451077)

Replace cups of coffee with double espresso. That would give you ~3L of espresso (double shot is about 50ml). If one cup == a single espresso then it's ~1.5L.

It's a hell of a lot. Wikipedia says 100mg caffeine per espresso, so that's 6g of caffeine.

From wiki page on caffeine [wikipedia.org] LD50 is somewhere in the region of 150-250mg per kilo, but with "serious symptoms of overdose requiring hospitalization occurring from as little as 2 grams of caffeine".

Re:60 cups (5, Interesting)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450461)

For the most part, LSD doesn't cause true hallucinations -- it distorts things. You'll see the wood grain on your desk flowing, or the tree waving at you... but you won't see a pink unicorn in the room next to you that doesn't correspond to some vaguely similar object that's actually there. Take a high enough dose, and the level of distortion gets high enough that it's hard to figure out whether that's still the case. But at the 1 dose level, the vast majority of people don't experience true hallucinations -- and it sounds like they're suggesting that with caffeine, that's not true.

Re:60 cups (1)

berend botje (1401731) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450565)

Well, that's not entirely true...

If you take a high enough dose you will experience things you never would or could imagine possible.

Low doses, yes, that goes like you say. But where's the fun in that? :-)

Re:60 cups (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450589)

I can vouch for this and am not surprised by the coffee result.

From personal experience, abuse of stimulants will make you see things (and believe them to be real) far more than LSD. LSD may make things more, flow, pulse, dance and melt, but seldom produces true hallucinations. You're also sort of aware of what's real and what's not. Sort of. Stimulants will make you see people in the shadows and hear voices and be convinced by them, because you are tired, strung out and generally fscked up.

Re:60 cups (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450953)

Having never done LSD (or any other drug, for that matter....) I have never experienced this.

Are you saying LSD makes things look kind of like this?

http://www.msdlists.com/surrealism/Dali%20Persistence%20of%20Time.html [msdlists.com]

Re:60 cups (4, Informative)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451047)

Yeah, that's what he's saying. Though with more motion, and less respect for gravity. Similarly, too much digitalis can make things look like this [wikimedia.org] . Generalizations about exactly what LSD hallucinations look like are a bad idea, though -- it's highly variable, with strong dependence on the person, the dose, the setting, the person's mood...

Re:60 cups (2, Funny)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450539)

I remember reading somewhere that 60 cups of coffee would supposedly yield the same level of hallucinations as 1 dose of LSD...

Hmmm, where was that study from ?

60 cups of US coffee are like 3 cups of coffee elsewhere. And while I confess to not having tried LSD, I've already had way more than 3 large cups of real coffee in a day. And nothing much happened.

So unless you give more data I'm not convinced. If it's a European (preferably southern) study, then maybe there's something to it.

(granted, there now are ways to get coffee in the US instead of just warm water with a brown crayon dipped in but us Euro people used to be fairly puzzled over there for quite a while)

Re:60 cups (1)

Seakip18 (1106315) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450689)

You know, french presses and espresso machine *do* make their way over here. And, to shock you I'm sure, we are fully capable of roasting, sealing, refrigerating and grinding beans.

On top of that, if you have a "coffee club" or some crap in a office, you get folks who don't want strong coffee or want to avoid buying grounds.

Re:60 cups (5, Informative)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450981)

I actually work part time for a Starbucks... and do you know who gets bitten by the caffeine fairy? Europeans.

When you go to Europe, you get espresso for nearly everything. If n American goes over there, they have name for their drink, an Americano. Shots + hot water. Ok.. 3 shots/200mg caf. ~300-400mg per drink. And you have the strength of the smoky espresso, so Americans get somewhat what they want.

Now, a European comes to the USA. They order a coffee (they expect espresso) and they're handed a cup of our coffee: coarse grounds over hot water. It tastes too weak, but they drink it anyways. They then drink 2-5 cups before the caffeine kicks in and they've never felt the jitters like that.

Our coffee extratcs more caf, but with less coffee flavour, while they extract flavour with less caffeine.. makes things fun.

Why Im there: 5 hours in a 5-10 am shift 4 times a week gives me full medical benefits on the cheap, so I can continue my consultancy.

Where to find the study (1)

ciaohound (118419) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450975)

Here's a video site [aol.com] that features it.

Re:60 cups (1)

Kreigaffe (765218) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451097)

AAaaaaannnnd where exactly were you buying this "american coffee".

I grew up drinking coffee made by a relative who was born in the late 1890s, and it was the darkest, thickest, strongest coffee I've ever had.

Re:60 cups (1)

Cathoderoytube (1088737) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450547)

60 cups is enough to give you caffeine toxicity. I'm not sure how bad that is though, considering they induce it in newborn infants to prevent sleep apnea.

Re:60 cups (4, Interesting)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450919)

"The lowest known dose fatal to an adult has been 3,200 mg - administered intravenously by accident. The fatal oral dose is in excess of 5,000 mg - the equivalent of 40 strong cups of coffee taken in a very short space of time. "

source [xs4all.nl]

But its on the internet, so its gotta be true! Right?!?! Take it with a grain of salt and a cup o' joe.

Re:60 cups (1)

Firemouth (1360899) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450635)

I think we're going about this the wrong way... Just setup a bong and pour in ~60 ounces of espresso. Takes the water out of the equation!

Re:60 cups (3, Funny)

ben0207 (845105) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450845)

During Uni I once crushed up some coffee granules and snorted a couple of fat lines.

I was fucked beyond words for a few days.

Then I tried it with Pro Plus.

Re:60 cups (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450849)

Unless you were drinking coffee while you were taking a piss, I don't know how you'd manage to get the time to drink that much before the first ones wore off......

7 cups? (5, Funny)

robthebloke (1308483) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450333)

It was 7 cups of coffee on the news this morning, mind you I might have hallucinated that.

Re:7 cups? (1)

berend botje (1401731) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450609)

I routinely drink way more coffee than that, and not those watery american brews either.

I have yet to start hallucinating from it. Me thinks the reporter is fibbing...

Re:7 cups? (4, Funny)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450985)

Maybe this story is a hallucination, and you just think you read it.....

Ahh but... (3, Funny)

Pvt_Ryan (1102363) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450345)

You are not paranoid if they really are out to get you, which lets face it they are..

Re:Ahh but... (2, Funny)

DrLang21 (900992) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450393)

And you people mocked my tin hat. Who's mocking now!

Re:Ahh but... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Monkey (795756) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450809)

That one guy over by the mind control device.

Re:Ahh but... (1)

internerdj (1319281) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450529)

Or are watching you, which they would be in the case of a study...

the words "no shit" (3, Funny)

shiba_mac (415267) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450347)

..come to mind.

Re:the words "no shit" (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26451089)

Yes, caffeine does cause constipation. But this is about the hallucinations.

Grammar are a good thing to use. (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450349)

The abstract are available? Parenthetical statement doesn't count as a subject, I don't think.

That said, maybe all the coffee drinkers just think everyone else is stealing their coffee. :)

Re:Grammar are a good thing to use. (1)

Exitar (809068) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450397)

I know you are!

Re:Grammar are a good thing to use. (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450503)

Then quit whining and make another pot. Or remove the coffee grounds and mix 'em in with a little hot water. I've done it and it's not that bad.

Re:Grammar are a good thing to use. (1)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450659)

Plus there's: "The Telegraph and other sources, a study..."

Nice grammar there too. Reminds me of the "I accidentally the whole [noun]" meme.

No surprises (4, Insightful)

DrLang21 (900992) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450361)

Who is actually surprised that consuming large amounts of a brain stimulant can cause hallucinations and paranoia? It should be no shocker that when you are over stimulated, your brain starts finding new outlets.

Three cups? (5, Funny)

rvw (755107) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450367)

So now it's one man and three cups? I thought the hallucination was about two girls!

Re:Three cups? (3, Funny)

wild_quinine (998562) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450905)

So now it's one man and three cups? I thought the hallucination was about two girls!

With the two girls, it's straightforward PTSD.

Good thing... (1)

Thelasko (1196535) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450369)

I only drink two cups per day. I also have a Coke with lunch...

Now I'm off to fight the gremlin that lives in the supply closet. He keeps stealing my stapler!

Re:Good thing... (1)

AviLazar (741826) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450715)

Now I'm off to fight the gremlin that lives in the supply closet. He keeps stealing my stapler!

See too much coffee. That is actually the midget coworker of yours who is trying to get his stapler back after you stole it two weeks ago. Man you need some sensitivity classes.

Wow, bad reporting or bad science? (5, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450387)

"Triples your risk" - well, what are the risks WITHOUT coffee? I drink coffee all day long, yet I haven't had a hallucination since 1982 (the last time I did acid).

lack of sleep will case hallucinations.

And exactly what do they mean by "hallucinations?" Water swilrling down a drain may make you think you heard a female voice; "floaters" in your eyeballs (you'll get 'em when you're older) can make you momentarily think you saw something that wasn't there. I wouldn't count those as hallucinations.

Previous studies have shown that too much caffeine can lead to heart palpitations, insomnia [DUH! it's a stimulant] and even affect a woman's chances of becoming pregnant. [Coffee -- the new birth control!]

"The new study also showed that people who had a high caffeine intake were not more likely to think that others were out to get them, a so-called "persecution complex".

That one little word omitted (that I bolded that WAS in TFA but not in the summary) changes the meaning completely, doesn't it? Taco, you need to cut down on the Jolt! get some sleep, dude!

Re:Wow, bad reporting or bad science? (4, Interesting)

berend botje (1401731) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450665)

lack of sleep will case hallucinations.

And severe paranoia, as well. Once I been up and about for just over 70 hours and that is _not_ healthy. Slept for 17 hours after that. Never going to that again, it was living hell.

Re:Wow, bad reporting or bad science? (4, Insightful)

Xelios (822510) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450957)

I find the article itself is pretty indicative of a lot of these correlation based studies. The whole article talks about caffeine being linked to hallucinations, then at the very end, the researcher says something along the lines of "Oh, by the way, people who are more stressed for other reasons are likely to drink more coffee, and I guess that stress could be what's causing the hallucinations."

Well super. So in the end, what exactly has this study proven that we didn't already know?

Forgive the attitude, this stuff is just starting to grate my nerves. I think I need a cup of coffee.

Re:Wow, bad reporting or bad science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450997)

Wow that's the most critical word in entire article. I almost walked away without reading the article thinking that caffeine made people think others were out to get them!

Re:Wow, bad reporting or bad science? (1)

IceCreamGuy (904648) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451051)

"floaters" in your eyeballs (you'll get 'em when you're older)

Maybe you do notice them more when you're older, or maybe I'm just overly sensitive (which I've been told by many optometrists that I am), but I've noticed those ever since I was a toddler.

Re:Wow, bad reporting or bad science? (1)

eln (21727) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451109)

I agree that it's more likely a lack of good sleep. I went through a phase when I used to pull "all-nighters" playing MUDs, and would often have some vague auditory or sometimes even visual hallucinations the day after (meaning after a period of 36 hours or more without sleep), usually when I was in that trance-like extremely overtired state. Some caffeine may have helped me to stay awake that long, but I think it was the general lack of sleep that caused the hallucinations, since they are a well-known side effect of sleep deprivation.

Either that or I was having a major psychotic break. Six of one, half dozen of the other I suppose.

Might depend on the person (2, Insightful)

pwizard2 (920421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450391)

I've had 4 cups this morning, and I feel fine. Maybe I have a high caffeine tolerance.

Re:Might depend on the person (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450979)

No, you hallucinated that last cup!

Re:Might depend on the person (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451041)

Might also depend on the coffee. The instant stuff that my brother drinks generally isn't as strong as the stuff I get from the coffee shop on the way to work for example.

Not to mention that (though I'm sure they used a sensible measure for the study) people vary a lot in what they call a "cup" of coffee. The HR Director at my last job would say that she drank 2-3 cups per day, but her "cup" was a giant 64oz mug that was more like a "bucket" of coffee than a "cup".

Yet to experience them. (4, Insightful)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450421)

And I bought a jar of Caffeine off of Unitednucler.com for 10$.

ACS/reagent grade, so great to use... I use mine with DMSO if I want the caf without bitterness. In my job, if I take a .5g hit, I feel it after about 10 minutes where I consistently get more lively and awake.

Just watch for the downs after about 6 hours after first hit. You'll get hit with extreme tiredness and apathy... You wont be close enough to a bed.

*I dont work for UnitedNuclear.com : Im just a happy purchaser.

Re:Yet to experience them. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450779)

ACS/reagent grade, so great to use... I use mine with DMSO if I want the caf without bitterness.

Remember kids, just because it's legal, doesn't mean you're not a fucked-up addict. Seriously, absorbing caffeine through your skin?

Working for UnitedNuclear (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450861)

I dont work for UnitedNuclear.com : Im just a happy purchaser.

Well, now after posting on Slashdot that you can buy a big jar of pure caffeine from them, they're probably going to wish you did work for them, so they could fire you for making them get slashdotted.

Re:Yet to experience them. (2, Informative)

junner518 (1235322) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450891)

From United Nuclear's website

Caffeine is a central nervous system and metabolic stimulant in small milligram quantities, however, ingestion of only slightly larger amounts can be fatal. This material is for experimental purposes only and not to be added to food or drink products.
Caution: Caffeine is toxic. Use normal safety precautions (wear a filter mask/respirator and gloves) when working with Caffeine. Accidental inhalation of fine particles can be dangerous. Note: adult signature required upon delivery.

Disregarding the FUD, I still would think twice about ingesting pure caffeine.

Hallucinations? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450431)

They were probably imagining they'd have a job after leaving Uni

Ninnle's the charm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450433)

This is all fine and good, but arriving at work and being able to use the magic of Ninnle Linux on the desktop, with NinWM and Ninnle Office to boot, the hallucinations disappear quickly. The solution? More coffee, of course! I recommend the new Ninnle blend available at Starbucks.

Tags (5, Funny)

Thyamine (531612) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450443)

I love the correlationisnotcausation tag. It gets applied to any story like this, and while it often seems to be accurate, I imagine someone would stick it on a story titled 'Study shows stabbing yourself may increase blood loss'.

Re:Tags (3, Insightful)

nloop (665733) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450653)

Thank you! I'm glad someone else saw that. I'm pretty sure an overdose of caffeine is causation for paranoia and hallucinations. I think a better argumentative tag would have been "obviousscience."

Re:Tags (2, Insightful)

jpeaton (1452703) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450801)

Well, the people who add the tags don't read the actual article...tags only show what the majority of people who saw the headline think! The authors themselves say:"we cannot eliminate the possibility that hallucination-proneness could be a cause rather than a result of increased caffeine intake. This would be consistent with the finding that caffeine intake can act as a coping mechanism to bring relief from problems". Yeah, I'd be drinking something stronger than coffee if I was hallucinating.

Re:Tags (4, Informative)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450913)

In this case, it's appropriate. The study authors suggest that there may be causation, but also state that all they have evidence of is correlation -- and that the causation may go the other direction. The /. summary fabricated the causation without regards to the linked article, let alone the study.

It explains the success of Starbucks (0, Offtopic)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450467)

This study finally explains why Starbucks is so successful. Its products create an illusion in their customers that they are normal human beings with some real life worth living. Once these Starbucks addicts stay away from caffeine they are overwhelmed by their own sense of inadequacy and rush back to the store for another hit.

Re:It explains the success of Starbucks (1)

AviLazar (741826) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450761)

This study finally explains why Starbucks is so successful. Its products create an illusion in their customers that they are normal human beings with some real life worth living. Once these Starbucks addicts stay away from caffeine they are overwhelmed by their own sense of inadequacy and rush back to the store for another hit.

Really? Do you, as a /.'er, really want to make fun of people not having lives worth living? I mean talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

Don't Panic! (1)

A. B3ttik (1344591) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450485)

According to the article, 3 cups of coffee makes me three times more likely to experience hallucinations than if I had no cups of coffee.

Well, I'm pretty sure that my chances of hallucinating on No Cups of coffee are nearly Zilch... let's say .001% just for giggles. So three times that is .003%... big deal. Indeed the article even mentions that -maybe- 10% of all people will "hear voices" at some point throughout their lives.

The most profound thing I got out of the article is the fact that if you are already prone to hallucinations, Caffeine will make it worse. That doesn't surprise me, but I guess it's nice to have some data to back it up.

This is wierd (1)

JeffSpudrinski (1310127) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450497)

I think the guy that wrote this article is out to get me.

I heard him talking about it just a moment ago...

Causation (1)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450527)

The study authors imply only a link, not causation. "Correlation is not causation" is a bit overused around here, but in this case it's worth repeating since the /. summary introduced the error. FTFA:

The researchers believe that caffeine could heighten the effect that stress has on the body, triggering the hallucinations.

However, they also suggest that people who are more prone to hallucinations could also be more stressed and more likely to consume large amounts of caffeine.

Correlation (4, Insightful)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450591)

Why must we tag EVERYTHING correlationisnotcausation. Does /. suddenly have a patent disregard for statistics in it entirety? Seriously, what is the alternative here? People about to have a hallucination have a sudden caffeine urge before their episode? Looking at the study from both sides is good. Ignoring statistics entirely is cowardly. I see too many people ignoring them because they are offensive (religion correlates with violent crime, homocide, stds, abortion). And i mean blanket ignoring, not trying to deduce anything from the stats. I never used to think of /.ers as the types to plug their ears and go lalalala. But this meme is childish.

I call BS (1, Interesting)

Kintanon (65528) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450603)

There was a time in my life when I regularly consumed 1500mg of caffeine every 24 hours. I had no hallucinations, no paranoia... Nothing.
The headaches when I stopped were nothing short of spectacular, but other than intense concentration and a frantic work pace I never saw anything crazy from the caffeine intake. And that's a hell of a lot more than 3 cups of coffee.

Re:I call BS (4, Funny)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450813)

What's this "posting on slashdot" thing you keep mumbling about? And what's an "internet"?

Dude, you gotta snap out of it. We've a big stack of betamax tapes over here for you to watch, if you'd just come back to us.

Re:I call BS (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451103)

The headaches when I stopped were nothing short of spectacular

Caffeine (unlike marijuana or magic mushrooms) is not merely habituating, but physically addictive. The headaches are its withdrawal symptoms, and like an alcoholic with the shakes, the greater your drug intake, the greater the withdrawal symptoms when you stop.

You can die from alcohol withdrawal. I don't think caffeine's withdrawal symptoms are as severe.

I was right! (1)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450613)

So they ARE out to get me! That's why they're making scientific studies to discover my mental weaknesses! *gulps more coffee to maintain state of catlike readiness*

Remember though... (1)

wandazulu (265281) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450619)

...it's not a hallucination if they really are out to get you.

Caffeine addict (1)

Daswolfen (1277224) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450621)

I started in 1984. I drank Dr. Pepper, but when I went to Gen-Con, I put 4 no-doze per can(crushed) in order to stay up the whole convention. Since then, I have been abusing caffeine regularly (a progression from Dr. Pepper, to Mt Dew, to Jolt and other 'energy drinks'. Current favorite of those types of drink is Bawls) since then and have yet to have any sort of problem. I go though a 2 liter of Coke Cherry Zero a day (plus 2+ 20oz of coke zero/coke cherry zero at work).

I can drink Cherry Zero right before bed, and I am asleep in no time. Of course, maybe I am just a caffeine burnout since my body now requires it (and if I go more than a few hours awake without it, I start to get a headache).

Re:Caffeine addict (1)

ben0207 (845105) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451039)

I'm not worried about the caffeine content, I'm worried about your sugar level. Drinking soda like it was water must be wreaking havoc on your digestive system.

Hallucinations (0)

daybot (911557) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450655)

I sometimes have auditory hallucinations at night after an excessively busy or stressful day, if I've been up for 18 hours or so. I'll hear an underground train, or people talking (no specific words) - but when I concentrate I realise it's not there.

I put this down to being in a state of consciousness that's closer to sleep than normal. Of course, on a day like that, I consume more coffee than usual. Correlation is not causation.

tinfoil hats (1)

AviLazar (741826) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450669)

as well as making people think that others are "out to get them".

Explains the /. crew. Stop drinking the Dew and you won't need your tinfoil hats anymore. Or is this a gov't ploy to weaken your defenses!

Re:tinfoil hats (1)

bytethese (1372715) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450921)

Yeah, but Mt Dew "causes sterility". :) In the case of most /.ers this may be a wanted side effect.

In regards to your sig, my welcome what?

Do the dew! (3, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450673)

I enjoy a lovely Mountain Dew high every morning at work, and never suffer any ill effects... other than the giant spiders. Those can be a bit off putting. The glowing, telepathic ferrets usually keep them at bay, though. Hallucinations! Pfft! As if! Now excuse me. I must kiss teh sky.

"Energy" Drinks (2, Insightful)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450783)

I've always been turned off from so called "Energy Drinks". I see too many people pound down these combinations of corn syrup and caffeine. The boost is very brief and all that sugar can't be good for the waistline or for insulin levels. The appeal seems to be mostly marketing. If you need lots of caffeine to function you'd be better off getting a decent night's sleep regularly.

Re:"Energy" Drinks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450851)

> If you need lots of caffeine to function you'd be better off getting a decent night's sleep regularly.

Ironic, given your signature :)

Which are my real friends (4, Funny)

harl (84412) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450819)

Great now I have to figure out which are my real friends and which ones I'm making up.

Paranoia much? (1)

bytethese (1372715) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450821)

as well as making people think that others are "out to get them"

It's not "thinking" they are out to get you if they ARE out to get you, you insensitive clod!!

/continues drinking his 44oz coffee...

Try mixing it with real psych problems! (4, Interesting)

crazycheetah (1416001) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450877)

First of all, I thought we knew this already? O.o

Second, it's more fun if you have a pre-existing psychiatric condition. Personally, it has some nice effects on my PTSD. On the one end, it can help with the numbness and similar symptoms, because I get amped up and happy if I drink enough of it. On the other end, holy shit does the hypervigilance, irritability, and other such symptoms get worse with enough caffeine. Of course, that's really noticeable when you're drinking 3-4 16oz energy drinks every single day, like I used to before I started to realise the extent of my problem. Even down to only one cup of coffee every day, I still don't get any more sleep though, so whatever.

Can't say I've experienced the hallucinations so much, though. But I can only imagine someone with schizophrenia or other disorders causing hallucinations (well, you could try to get away with saying PTSD has hallucinations as they are similar, but there's actually distinct differences between flashback type things of PTSD and hallucinations) drinking a lot of caffeine. Mix it with weed and it's even more fun! I could also say meth, cocaine, and some others, but that sounds like a heart attack waiting to happen, and they can cause hallucinations themselves anyway; and no I'm not kidding--working in an emergency room, I've seen my fair share of heart attacks where the only reasonable explanation was meth/cocaine use.

Nonetheless, I'd be more concerned about ulcers and other problems, like heart problems, that can come with heavy caffeine use. You can at least pass off a somewhat normal life, without ending up in the hospital for it, with the hallucinations, if you really try ;)

What dose this mean (1)

VEGETA_GT (255721) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450889)

That 1/2 of Slashdot members where Hallucinating by 9 am this morning :)

After 100 cups... (1)

xgr3gx (1068984) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450949)

You'll have super speed, so everything will look like it's in slow motion
Ala Fry in that Futurama episode

I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450951)

On a typical day I have 3 shots of espresso, 2 red bulls, and 2-3 regular sodas. I no longer get caffeine jitters or any immediately noticeable side effects. On some days when I'm extremely sleep deprived and I completely overdo it (4 red bulls, 6 shots of espresso) my paranoia goes through the roof. I get manic depressive.. I try not to do that anymore =)

What a relief! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26450983)

So this Anonymous Coward guy is just in my head? Phew! I better lay off the caffeine then.

contoleld experiement with STUDENTS? (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 5 years ago | (#26450989)

They are probably contaminated with every substance under the sun. Got to rule out the nicotine, the energy drinks, the booze, the hard drugs ...

What I really want to know is ... (1)

gerddie (173963) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451029)

... whether drinking 100 cups of coffee will really slows down time for you.

Anecdotal Evidence is Crap, but... (4, Funny)

StaticEngine (135635) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451065)

Back in college, when I was still super driven to be the best at everything, I used to down several cups of coffee and tea at night in order to remain awake and focused while doing my homework. It got to the point where after drinking the tea, I would suck on the teabag (keep your wiseass comments to yourself, thanks) because I'd read that saliva could extract even more caffiene.

This all ended one night when I woke up at about 3AM (after staying up until 1 doing some Physics III homework) with what sounded like a couple of dozen people having a rally in my head. I couldn't make out individual voices, words, or sentences, but the sound was distinct: lots of people were talking over one another, LOUDLY, and there was no way to get away from it or make it quieter. It was, frankly, extremely frightening, even though it only took a minute to realize what was going on and why. I wound up lying on a couch in the common area with a pillow over my head for about an hour, wishing the noise would stop so I could actually get some sleep. Eventually, it quieted enough that I could crawl back into bed and catch another four or so hours before needing to get up for class.

Anyway, caffiene: it's a drug, and now I limit myself to one cup in the AM and occasionally another in the afternoon, or a very small cup with dessert. Auditory hallucinations are no fun, and I found that I value the quality of a healthy life much more than the rewards of intense focused work these days.

Scientitfic? (1)

systematical (1394991) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451095)

The article does not mention the mental state of these students, any adverse health problems they may already be suffering from, a genetic disposition towards these behaviors or anything like that. These "scientists" are clearly out to get you, me, and everyone else.

I had this happen to me. (3, Insightful)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 5 years ago | (#26451105)

I had given up caffeine for about 6 months, and then needed to pull an all-nighter at work. I went to the 7-11 and got a Double Gulp of Coca-Cola, and drank it all pretty quickly. Within about an hour, I started seeing "movement" out of the corner of my eye - just little flashes, but enough to startle me and make me turn and look. I also got paranoid; I was on a construction site (only one there) and even though my car was right outside my window, and a diesel to boot, I became convinced someone was trying to steal the car silently. I would check every 15 minutes to see if it was still there.

These symptoms are also seen in recreational users of amphetamines, so I assumed (afterward) that it was an overdose of stimulants per se, not that it was caffeine.

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