Research has shown that alpha is suppressed following the use of certain common legal drugs. Ideally, the legal drugs that you should eliminate to create a brain environment that best supports alpha production are caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol.
Caffeine is the most commonly consumed legal drug. 166 million Americans consume coffee alone, and sodas account for 56 gallons per person per year. Caffeine is found in a wide variety of beverages, not just coffee. In fact, coffee consumption has declined since the 1960s by a cup a day to only 1.5 cups on average. However, that is a per capita consumption figure, which means that many people drink no coffee, and many people consume far more than 1.5 cups. A 12-ounce cup of coffee contains between 80 and 175 mg of caffeine, depending on the brewing method.
The rising popularity of caffeine-laced energy drinks and sports drinks is another source providing almost as much caffeine as a cup of coffee. At the same time, most sodas contain about one third as much (but still a significant amount). Chocolate also contributes caffeine to the diet, as it makes black or green tea. Nestle’s Nesquick is a form of chocolate that is 99.9% caffeine-free for those chocoholics among you. Chocolate has phytochemicals, which are very good for you. If you avoid mixing dairy products with your chocolate, you will find that it has a powerful anti-inflammatory effect. However, this anti-inflammatory effect is canceled out by milk and dairy, so have your Nesquick with hot water instead of milk. The benefits of taking an aspirin a day to reduce inflammation-related illnesses are well known. Less well known and more fun is the inflammation-related benefit of consuming caffeine-free chocolate.
Caffeine clearly increases the amount of beta in the brain and suppresses alpha, placing a tremendous block on the brain’s ability to generate more alpha waves. The alpha suppressing effects of caffeine last for at least 15 hours after consumption.
Nicotine functions in the body as a vasoconstrictor. This reduces blood flow to the brain and reduces alpha activity. It does not matter to your alpha waves whether
the nicotine is delivered in smoke, a transdermal patch, in chewing gum, or chewing tobacco. It all has a vasoconstrictive effect. The only difference is in the speed with which it gets into your bloodstream and then to your brain.
Inhaling nicotine in smoke is a faster way to suppress alpha than sending it through your stomach or skin. One time we had a woman in training with panic attacks, which were permanently cured by her Alpha One training. But on one of the days of her 7-day Alpha One training, she said she had to interrupt her session in the middle of her alpha feedback training to go to the bathroom. Curiously, she grabbed her purse to take along to the bathroom. When she came back, she smelled strongly of cigarette smoke. Both my assistant Mo and I noticed that she reeked of smoke, but we said nothing, not wanting to put a guilt trip on her that might undermine her work in the alpha chamber. As soon as we plugged her back in and the alpha feedback resumed, she saw, and we saw, the amazing alpha suppressing effects of the cigarette she had sneaked into the bathroom for smoking. Her alpha had dropped to almost nothing. It was less than 20% of what it had been before she called out, saying that she needed to go to the bathroom. So even though we said absolutely nothing, she got the point as she saw how nicotine almost wiped out her alpha production. Subsequently, she was able to quit smoking, aided by the absolutely unmistakable evidence of how nicotine undermined her well-being by undermining her ability to produce and sustain alpha.
Alcohol has a more complex effect on alpha. Initially, with alcohol consumption, there is a relaxation effect that begins to occur, especially with highly stressed people who may not know how to relax on their own without the drug. In this initial phase of alcohol intoxication, physical relaxation goes along with an increase of alpha waves, and people start to feel good because of this alpha increase and the relaxation of their stress. However, as more alcohol is consumed, and as time passes, alcohol’s effects as a central nervous system depressant begin to come into play and predominate. This phase involves the suppression of alpha activity. In my research, we have studied how alcohol consumption ‘yesterday’ can even affect your alpha levels today. As little as 1-2 beers 24 hours ago will significantly depress your alpha levels the next day. The statistical evidence is obvious on this point. I know pilots who weigh 240 pounds which will not drink even one beer if they plan to fly the next day because they can ‘feel’ that their reactions are off if they had any alcohol at all the previous day. For a 240-pound man, one beer is a tiny dose per pound of body weight. How much more would that affect you if you were 150 pounds? There are reports from practitioners that alcohol open holes in your aura for those who are into energy medicine and make you more vulnerable to negative energies. But even without that effect, the alpha suppressing effects of even small amounts of alcohol would encourage the wise to avoid alcohol most or all of the time.