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Caffeine improves response to moving targets

Caffeine improves response to moving targets

Researchers in Canada have found that caffeine significantly increases our alertness and accuracy when it comes to detecting and tracking moving objects. This substance also improves reaction time.

The results of this world’s first study on the effects of caffeine on dynamic visual skills have been published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology (http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00213-021-05953-1).

“Many parts of our environment are moving, and we see moving objects when crossing a busy intersection or even walking between shelves in a store. Many parts of our environment are moving, and we see moving objects when crossing a busy intersection or even walking between shelves in a store,” says Dr. Kristen Dalton of the Waterloo School of Optics and Vision Sciences, lead author of the study. More about our functional performance in these situations than traditional fixed visual acuity measurements.

As the researcher explains, visual acuity, also called visual acuity, refers to a person’s ability to detect and recognize small details of the world around us. It can be measured in stationary or moving conditions.

“Although we have known for some time that caffeine increases REM speed, it has not been explained how to improve visual processing and detection of moving stimuli. We decided to test this by testing dynamic visual acuity,” says co-author Beatrice Redondo of University of Granada (Spain).

The tests were conducted on volunteers who were divided into two groups. The group took a caffeine capsule (4 mg/kg) for the first time and the other half a placebo capsule. Then each participant’s dynamic visual acuity skills were assessed by computer measurement (60 min before and after caffeine intake).

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They found that the participants who took the caffeine capsule showed significantly greater accuracy and speed when identifying small moving objects (stimuli). This means that caffeine positively affected their processing of visual stimuli and their decision making. The researchers also noted that the speed of eye movements and contrast sensitivity related to dynamic visual acuity were also dependent on caffeine.

Dr. Dalton concludes, “Our findings suggest that caffeine consumption can be beneficial in improving a person’s visual function by increasing alertness and awareness.”

Katarzyna Czekovic

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