You May Also Like

Add Audible to your list of free workout apps

Get free guided workouts from an audiobook app—i.e., a nerdy runner’s dream come true

How to style your bangs without heat? Super easy

The lazy-girl hack for styling bangs flawlessly, sans *any* heat damage

Need veggie sandwich ideas? Try this rainbow one

It’s possible to eat a rainbow for lunch thanks to this ultimate veggie sandwich

Exercising while pregnant: Woman bikes to delivery

“Beautiful Sunday for a bike ride,” says the most overachieving pregnant lady…en route to give birth

chai tea benefits

Chai tea’s a low-key gut-health hero—and that’s just one of its many health benefits

Maple Leaves Botox

Scientists deem maple leaves the plant-based solution to wrinkles

Here’s why you probably need way less sweetener in your coffee than you think


Thumbnail for Here’s why you probably need way less sweetener in your coffee than you think
Pin It
Photo: Stocksy/Treasures & Travels

Do you curiously crave doughnuts (and not the healthy kind) to chase your morning cup of coffee? If so, it’s not you—it’s the caffeine.

You might depend on that nice jolt of energy to kick off your day, but according to a new study published in the Journal of Food Science, your love of caffeine can actually temporarily weaken your taste buds, making food and drinks taste less sweet—thus making you drool over sugary foods more than you otherwise might have.

“When you drink caffeinated coffee, it will change how you perceive taste.”

In the blind study, 107 participants were randomly separated into two groups: one drank caffeinated coffee while the other drank decaf, both with sugar added to their drinks. The participants who had the caffeinated coffee rated it as less sweet than those drinking decaf, even though the amount of sugar was the same in cup.

“When you drink caffeinated coffee, it will change how you perceive taste—for however long that effect lasts,” senior author Robin Dando, assistant professor of food science at Cornell University, said in a press release. “So if you eat food directly after drinking a caffeinated coffee or other caffeinated drinks, you’ll likely perceive food differently.”

Also surprising, neither group in the study could tell whether the coffee was caffeinated or decaf—participants in both claimed increased alertness, but didn’t show any improvement in reaction times, which kind of calls coffee’s purported awakening powers into question.

“We think there might be a placebo or a conditioning effect to the simple action of drinking coffee,” Dando said. “Think Pavlov’s dog. The act of drinking coffee—with the aroma and taste—is usually followed by alertness. So the panelists felt alert even if the caffeine wasn’t there.”

So, maybe you don’t need caffeine for a jolt of energy after all. (Just kidding! Enjoy your buzzy brew.) But feel free to ignore any java-induced sugar cravings your morning cup inspires.

This is the healthiest coffee order around, according to an expert. To supercharge your morning cup, use these four ways to give it a boost.

Loading More Posts...

You May Also Like

chai tea benefits

Chai tea’s a low-key gut-health hero—and that’s just one of its many health benefits

This is the only sweet potato soup recipe you need this fall—and it's totally vegan

This is the only sweet potato soup recipe you need for fall—and it’s totally vegan

Is it advisable to google my symptoms?

You now have researched-backed permission to go ahead and Google that weird rash

Add Audible to your list of free workout apps

Get free guided workouts from an audiobook app—i.e., a nerdy runner’s dream come true

Applegate lunch meal prep

The 10 essential building blocks to become a lunchtime meal-prep master

Exercising while pregnant: Woman bikes to delivery

“Beautiful Sunday for a bike ride,” says the most overachieving pregnant lady…en route to give birth