STATES CHRONICLE – A new study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology suggests that mixing energy drinks with liquor may boost the alcohol effect if the drinker thinks this would happen. Energy drinks do not contribute to intoxication. However, if consumers believe they might get drunk more easily after mixing their alcohol with such beverages, they get this result.
Is advertising the key in the effect of energy drinks?
Researchers know that many energy drink manufacturers advertise their products so that consumers should think they give them a boost of openness and self-confidence. If they manage to convince the people that they do, they might have the expected effect.
For the study, scientists analyzed the behavior of 154 young men. They offered them a cocktail containing an energy drink, vodka, and fruit juice. Then, they split them into groups and offered them beverages with different labels.
One group received drinks labeled as Red Bull and vodka, the second group received the vodka cocktail label, and the third one the fruit juice cocktail. Then, they started observing the behavior of the participants and found that the labels played a huge role in how they acted.
Energy drinks have a placebo effect
Those who were drinking the beverages labeled as Red Bull and vodka declared themselves as more drunk than the others. Also, they reported feeling more daring and confident. In fact, they assessed themselves as 51 percent more intoxicated than those who with the vodka and fruit juice cocktails.
Besides from regarding themselves as drunk, the men from the first group felt more at ease with approaching women, as they had more confidence that their advances would be welcomed. Also, they were more likely to gamble or to perform risky activities.
One last important finding was the fact that this behavior was more prominent in those participants who thought that a mix of energy drinks and alcohol might have such an effect. Therefore, these beverages have a placebo effect and they influence consumers only if they think this will happen.
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