LONDON: According to a new study, knowing that you have added energy drinks to a spirit will make you feel that you are more drunk.
As reported by The Independent, being told that an energy drink has been added to your alcoholic drink can make you feel more drunk, daring and sexually self-confident. The research had a total 154 participants, all heterosexual men, described as social drinkers and each were given a cocktail containing vodka, red bull and fruit juice.
The labelling of the cocktail either emphasized on the presence of the energy drink (‘a vodka-Red Bull cocktail’) or it was described as a ‘vodka cocktail’ or ‘exotic cocktail’ instead. The men were asked to complete a series of tasks on a computer to measure their perceived drunkenness, attitudes and behaviours.
The scientists found that those who drank the cocktail aware that it contained an energy drink “significantly increased perceived intoxication, risk-taking and sexual self-confidence”.
Study’s lead-author Yann Cornill shared, “Red bull has long used the slogan ‘Red Bull gives you wings’ but our study shows that this type of advertising can make people think it has intoxicating qualities when it doesn’t. When alcohol is mixed with an energy drink and people are aware of it, they feel like they’re more intoxicated simply because the marketing says they should feel that way.”
All the previous studies have warned of a danger when it comes to mixing energy drinks and alcohol. Couple of months back researchers found that the combination can increase the risk of injury on a night out as well as leading the person to stay out longer and drink more overall.
The current study found that emphasising the content of an energy drink in the cocktail decreased the participants’ intentions to drink drive.
“Given the study’s findings about the psychological effects of energy-drink marketing, energy drink marketers should be banned from touting the disinhibiting effects of their ingredients. Regulations and codes of conduct should consider the psychological – and not just the physiological – effects of products,” shared study’s co-author Pierre Chandon.
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The researchers suggested that policy makers re-examine the regulation and codes about advertising and labelling of energy drinks and potentially consider restrictions based on their psychological effect as well as physiological.