Want an Extra Lump of Sugar With Your Coffee? It’s All Caffeine’s Fault

Want an Extra Lump of Sugar With Your Coffee? It’s All Caffeine’s Fault

It all comes down to our taste buds and how caffeine works in our mouths, to suppress what you want most.

Do you find you love those double chocolate donuts in the morning, right after your coffee? But in the afternoon, they’re not so hot?

Somehow, at that time they actually taste too sweet.

If you’re drinking caffeinated coffee, there’s a reason for the difference in opinion, and it all comes down to science, a new study has revealed.

In research done at Cornell University, it was found that ingesting caffeine actually suppresses our ability to taste sweet things. It’s not that you can’t taste that double chocolate donut at 8:30 A.M at all, but it’s simply not as, well, saccharine as it seems at 4:30.

Caffeine affects our perception of taste, for as long as the “caffeine effect” has a hold on our body.
The study had one group of participants drink caffeinated coffee, and another decaffeinated coffee. Both groups had sugar added to their java but the second group perceive their drinks to be sweeter.

Related: Why You Should Make Time for ‘Coffee Naps’ in Your Day

Is coffee and sugar the only combo that ends up weakening one of its partners? Not according to Reader’s Digest. Yogurt can hinder the strength of chocolate by creating an acidic environment, and interestingly, salt can actually enhance the sweetness of fruits and veggies.

This might explain why my grandmother was always salting her watermelon, even when we called her crazy. The common condiment does this by blocking our detection of the bitter compounds present, which makes the sweet taste rise to the top.

What can enhance what you’re tasting? NPR.org says it’s music. Apparently, higher-pitched music enhances sweet and sour foods, and things like tubas can actually bring forth bitter flavors.

Skeptical? Crank up the stereo and see what you think.

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