it's science

Having to Pee Makes You a Better Liar

Photo: Adrianna Williams/Getty Images

If you have a pulse, you have experienced the feeling of having a bladder so full that nothing can get between you and your race to the bathroom. Well, a new study suggests that that might be the best time to try to get away with your juiciest and most evil lies. At California State University, researchers took a look at the inhibitory spillover effect, which is a fancy term for when our focus on one task facilitates the performance of another — such as needing to pee while also lobbing lies.

California State University’s study was simple: “Participants drank small (low-control) or large (high-control) amounts of water,” the abstract reads. “Next, they lied or told the truth to an interviewer.” Okay, got it so far. When third-party observers came in to deduce if the pee-babies were lying or telling the truth, the full-bladder subjects left few clues.

“In the high-control, but not the low-control condition, liars displayed significantly fewer behavioral cues to deception, more behavioral cues signaling truth, and provided longer and more complex accounts than truth-tellers,” the abstract continues. So next time you need to get out of work for, say, an impromptu trip to the Catskills, drink a lot of water first. You’ll have better luck at pulling off that fib.

Having to Pee Makes You a Better Liar