Alcohol’s effect on reaction time towards and taste perception of food

Duration: 80 minutes per session

Number of sessions: Two

Location:Eleanor Rathbone Building

You can take part if you meet these criteria:

  • Aged 18-65
  • Fluent English speaker
  • Enjoy consuming cookies and Tortilla Chips
  • Have normal or corrected to normal vision with contact lenses but not glasses
  • Are regular alcohol drinkers. You should only participate if you a) drink alcohol at least once per week and drink at least 10 alcohol units per week. For example, there are 10 units of alcohol in three and a half pints of lager OR five 175ml glasses of wine. This inclusion is to help ensure you do not feel ill if you are given alcohol to drink during the experiment
  • Provide an alcohol breathalyser reading of 0.0 mg/l. As you may be given alcohol during the experiment, we will ask you to provide a breathalyser reading before starting the experiment
  • Are able to consume a light meal (i.e. not high in fat) approx. 1 hour before each session

You cannot take part if any of the below is true:

  • Have ever received treatment for an alcohol problem, or if you are currently seeking such treatment or trying to cut down how much alcohol you drink
  • If you currently or have previously had an eating disorder
  • Currently taking any medication which may be affected by drinking alcohol (e.g., antidepressants, benzodiazepine), this includes cold and flu medicine, such as paracetamol
  • Currently suffering from or recovering from any illness that may increase your sensitivity to alcohol, e.g. cold, flu
  • FEMALES: Breastfeeding or pregnant. As the experiment may involve giving alcohol to drink, if you are pregnant or there is any possibility of you being pregnant or you have had unprotected sexual intercourse since your last period you will NOT be eligible to take part in this study
  • Be taking any medication that may influence appetite, with the exception of oral contraceptives
  • Have any food allergies or intolerances

Study description:

This study is investigating how varying alcohol dosage can affect both reaction time towards food stimuli as well as how alcohol dosage can alter the taste perception of certain foods. I am looking for male and female participants to participate in two sessions lasting approximately 80 minutes each. In each session you will consume a drink with either a high or low dose of alcohol. You will also complete an eye-tracking and reaction time task, salivation measures, and a taste test.

Researcher: Tom Gough, tomgough@liverpool.ac.uk

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