Does coffee do more harm than good? We are really just asking for a caffeine-keen friend, but if you are looking to cut down on overspending, then you might want to cut down on the morning coffee before you shop. According to international researchers, consuming caffeine before you shop can determine what you buy and how much you spend when you are shopping.
The research team from the University of South Florida in the United States published their recent findings in the Journal of Marketing. They found that shoppers who enjoyed a cup of caffeinated java before they shopped, spent at least 50% more money and bought 30% more items than shoppers who drank decaf coffee or water.
“Caffeine, as a powerful stimulant, releases dopamine in the brain, which excites the mind and the body. This leads to a higher energetic state, which in turn, enhances impulsivity and decreases self-control,” explains lead author professor Dipayan Biswas.
“As a result, caffeine intake leads to shopping impulsivity in terms of a higher number of items purchased and greater spending.”
How caffeine impacts the way you shop
The experiments consisted of setting up an espresso machine at the entrances of a retail chain and home goods store in Europe.
Upon entry, at least 300 shoppers were provided with a complimentary cup with of coffee that contained about 100mg of caffeine and the other half with decaf or water.
Shoppers then shared their receipts with the researchers as they exited the stores. “Researchers found that caffeinated individuals purchased a significantly higher number of items and spent more money compared to those who had decaf or water,” the report says.
Researchers found that caffeine also impacted what types of items shoppers bought. “Those who drank caffeinated coffee bought more non-essential items than the other shoppers, such as scented candles and fragrances. However, there was a minimal difference between the two groups when it came to utilitarian purchases, such as kitchen utensils and storage baskets.”
More coffee, more problems
Our socials are filled with match-sipping elites who rave about how quitting coffee has improved their life. But is coffee really that bad for you?
“While moderate amounts of caffeine intake can have positive health benefits, there can be unintended consequences of being caffeinated while shopping,” Biswas says. “That is, consumers trying to control impulsive spending should avoid consuming caffeinated beverages before shopping.”
But how does coffee impact our health? According to the Cleveland Clinic, a grown human adult should not consume more than 400mg of caffeine a day.
- Heart palpitations
- High blood pressure