BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Among the many differences between girls and boys, add the effects from caffeine -- physiological, behavioral and subjective -- to the list.
Results of a double-blind, placebo-controlled, dose-response study of the response of youth to caffeine found that, in general, boys get a greater rush and more energy from caffeine than girls.
Boys also reported they felt that caffeine had a positive effect on their athletic performance. Girls didn't report on this issue.
The study, conducted by Jennifer L. Temple, PhD, a neurobiologist and assistant professor of exercise and nutrition sciences at the University at Buffalo, appears in the current (December 2010) issue of Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology.
It is the first study to demonstrate gender differences in physiological response to acute caffeine in adolescents. Temple's initial paper on this research was published in the December 2009 issue of Behavioural Pharmacology.
"Our findings from this study and from our previous study suggest that boys and girls respond differently to caffeine," Temple says. "We are hoping that our findings from our studies on caffeine will help us to determine why males and females differ in susceptibility to drug abuse and respond differently to treatment."
The study involved 26 boys and 26 girls between the ages of 12 and 17. To take part in the research, the teenagers were required to have previous experience with caffeine but no adverse reactions, and not using hormone-based contraceptives, not smoking, not on any medication that could have adverse interactions with caffeine (e.g., methylphenidate) and were willing to visit the laboratory four times for 90 minutes each.
Participants were instructed not to drink caffeine 24 hours before each visit and to eat nothing or drink nothing but water for two hours before each visit.
On the first visit, participants completed a 24-h
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University at Buffalo