In popular culture, especially in movies and television, the audience is often shown scenes of people enjoying a cigarette or two with a cup of freshly brewed coffee. For many years, coffee and cigarettes have been the staple fare of artists, musicians and writers while they worked tirelessly to create their masterful works.
According to a recent study, however, years of smoking tobacco simply ruined the taste of coffee for most smokers – even after they quit.
The study, published in the journal Chemosensory Perception, found that whether the volunteers smoked or not did not affect whether they could recognise salty, sweet or sour tastes – but it did have an effect on the bitter taste of caffeine.
One in five smokers and one in four ex-smokers could not correctly recognise the taste. However, a mere 13 per cent of non-smokers failed the taste test.
Researchers believe the build-up of tobacco in the body could stop taste buds renewing themselves and so harm a person’s ability to recognise certain tastes, even after they have stopped smoking.
The experiment was conducted on 451 staff in Parisian hospitals.
Nevertheless, lots of smokers – and a big portion of the vaping population – enjoy the combined effects of nicotine and caffeine. If you wanted to know the reasons why, you should ask the sources: the smokers themselves.
This Quora user says that “the curing of tobacco and roasting of coffee beans helps to bring out those burnt caramel flavours that you get in coffee and cigarettes. The similar flavours complement one another.”
The flies in this monumental study proved that chemicals in cigarettes and coffee work together to give you that extra high rather than just when you’re having cigarettes or coffee alone.
After feeding coffee and tobacco extracts to the mutant flies, Trinh and colleagues dissected their brains to count their dopamine neurons.
These were compared to the brains of mutant flies that did not receive the extracts. They observed that both Parkin and SNCA mutant flies given coffee or tobacco extracts had more dopamine neurons than those given regular fly food.
The authors then repeated this experiment on other flies, but replaced the coffee or nicotine extracts in the fly food with pure caffeine or pure nicotine. This time, they could not detect a difference in the number of dopamine cells between untreated flies of either genotype and flies treated with caffeine or nicotine.
Many vapers love the mix of bitter and sweet in their e-juice. That’s why they often vape liquids with a cappuccino, latte or mocha flavor. A hint of vanilla or cream is usually detected.