Two pints of beer 'can help people tackle puzzles'

11 April 2012

A couple of pints of beer could help a person to sharpen their mind and improve their ability to solve brain teasers, new research suggests.

Psychologists at the University of Illinois tasked 40 healthy young men to solve a series of puzzles, with half of the group first drinking the equivalent of two pints of beer and the others remaining sober throughout.

Once tasked with a series of questions which involved being given three words and then indentifying a fourth word which links the rest, the drinking group solved around 40 per cent more brain teasers.

Furthermore, each question took the drinking team an average of 12 seconds to complete, compared to the 15.5 seconds required by the sober group.

Commenting on the findings to the Daily Mail, the study's author Jennifer Wiley said: "The bottom line is that we think being too focused can blind you to novel possibilities, and a broader, more flexible state of attention is needed for creative solutions to emerge."

A separate study recently published in the journal Hippocampus has also suggested that memory training can help to enhance the recollection skills of people who were prone to forgetting things.

Posted by Jeanette Royston

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