I think we can all remember those nights that started with a vodka Red Bull (or four) and ended with regret and a hangover. Now, new research claims that mixing energy drinks, like Red Bull with alcohol has a mind-altering effect on teenagers that can last into adulthood.
Energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster have as much as ten times the caffeine as soda, and mixing these beverages, especially Red Bull, with vodka is a popular party cocktail.
Researchers at Purdue University in Indiana used young mice to monitor the effects of mixing energy drinks and alcohol. Dr. Richard van Rijn said: “It seems the two substances together push them over a limit that causes changes in their behavior and changes the neurochemistry in their brains.”
The researchers also found increased levels of a protein called FosB, which suggests long-term effects in the brain chemistry of drug users–similar to the effects caused by taking cocaine. So if you’re partying this weekend, maybe go easy on the Red Bull and go in for straight shots. Or give your mixology skills a try.