According to research from Seat, over half of UK drivers eat junk food behind the wheel. The importance behind this is whether the sugar crash after the burst of alertness may negatively affect concentration and therefore safety of drivers.
The Spanish brand surveyed 2,000 drivers, and found that 63 per cent of those surveyed admitted to caving in to a craving for unhealthy food while driving. Almost 56 per cent of drivers also admitted to steering clear of the ever-increasing number of healthy options at service stations.
According to the research, upwards of £1.25 billion is spent on food and services, despite a majority of motorists believing that the pricing at service stations is too high.
Seat has flagged the issue associated with our snacking habits; while foods high in sugar and fat may briefly improve your alertness at the wheel, the resulting ‘sugar crash’ can affect concentration and mood, potentially making you more dangerous behind the wheel.
Richard Harrison, Managing Director at SEAT UK, said, “Most of us like a treat on long journeys but our research has revealed some worrying trends in our eating habits on the road. As a nation, we are much more aware of the numerous detrimental effects of eating unhealthily but it’s not easy to break bad habits, especially as driving can be stressful and we are often in a hurry.
“Due to this, we’re encouraging drivers to think more about what they choose to eat when on the road, potentially boosting mood and concentration levels. Despite the availability of junk food, there is vastly more information available about healthy eating, and even service stations now offer many more nutritious options than just a few years’ ago.”
This research is very interesting due to the popularity of drive-throughs and the continual expansion of the number of junk food outlets popping up alongside UK roads. It will be interesting to see if motorists can resist the urge for fast food and opt for a healthy option for the sake of safety.