Science has discovered rather startling similarities between the consumption of alcohol and energy drinks, and a certain illicit drug has on the body.
The study comes from Indiana's Purdue University, who analysed the brain chemistry of adolescent mice who had been given alcohol mixed with caffeine and those who had been given cocaine.
Lead researcher Dr. Richard van Rijn and his team noted that the mixed-drink group of mice showed staggeringly similar physical and neurochemical characteristics to that of those mice who were given cocaine, and, what’s more, they even suffered permanent damage due to a protein created by the mix called FosB, which changes your brain’s chemistry.
“It seems the two substances (high-energy drinks and alcohol) together push them over a limit that causes changes in their behaviour and changes the neurochemistry in their brains," he explained.
“We’re clearly seeing effects of the combined drinks that we would not see if drinking one or the other.”
The research also exposed that a slight tolerance to cocaine was formed for the mice who only consumed alcohol and caffeine. Meaning, that someone who had never even tried cocaine could develop a resilience without ever having tried it.
"That's one reason why it's so difficult for drug users to quit because of these lasting changes in the brain," the professor told The Sun.
Find out more about the shocking study in the video player below! Post continues...
"Mice that had been exposed to alcohol and caffeine were somewhat numb to the rewarding effects of cocaine as adults... They may then use more cocaine to get the same effect."
Such studies haven't been conducted on humans, however, changes seen in the brains of mice with illicit drugs in their systems have been previously shown to correlate with humans' throughout many other drug studies.