Cheer Up, Have Coffee, Science Suggests

A new study found that caffeine increases recognition of positive words

Secrets to a Perfect Latte

Keywords: latteEd KaufmannJoe


Turns out, those of us who need a cup of coffee in the morning to even crack a smile are completely normal. In fact, science has proven that people who have had coffee tend to be more positive, thanks to caffeine. So suck it, herbal tea guy.

According to research in the journal PLoS One, scientists have found that caffeine helps increase our ability to recognize positive words. After giving 66 people a caffeine tablet equal to three cups of coffee (we need those) or a placebo, the researchers showed them a string of letters. The volunteers had to recognize words within the string as quickly as possible.

The results? Volunteers with caffeine found words with positive associations much faster than negative or neutral words. Truth be told, in general positive words are pulled out much quicker, but caffeine reportedly increases the difference, meaning people should approach non-morning people with a cup of coffee and a chocolate donut. Please and thank you. Bonus points for amazing latte art.


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