Researchers confirm it — being hangry is real

New study confirms that people get angry and irritable when they’re hungry

Researchers have concluded that “being hangry is real.” (Pixabay)

Do you get hangry?

Well, you’re not alone and now you can prove it with science.

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A new study found the phenomenon is true — people get angry and irritable when they haven’t eaten.

Anyone who has experienced being hangry is probably saying, “duh” right about now.

The findings were published this week in the peer-reviewed journal Plos One.

Researchers said they decided to conduct research after hearing many colloquial uses of the term and realizing nobody had really ever studied it.

The study involved 64 participants from Central Europe who logged their emotions over 21 days. At five time-points each day they reported their hunger, anger, irritability, pleasure, and arousal.

Researchers found that when study participants reported that they were hungry, there were higher reported feelings of anger and irritability and lower reports of pleasure. And it didn’t matter the sex, age, body mass index, dietary behaviors or anger traits of the participant. It was universal.

The study suggested low blood glucose levels could be to blame. Other experimental studies have shown that low blood glucose levels increase impulsivity, anger, and aggression.

This study is the first to be conducted outside a lab and in real life.

Researchers concluded that “being hangry is real” and that when a person can put a label on that emotion, they can strategize how to minimize the negative feelings.

In other words, the Snickers commercials were right — “You’re not you when you’re hungry.”

Eat something.

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About the Author

Julie Moreno has worked in local television news for more than 25 years. She came to KSAT as a news producer in 2000. After producing thousands of newscasts, she transitioned to the digital team in 2015. She writes on a wide variety of topics from breaking news to trending stories and manages KSAT’s daily digital content strategy.

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