Is there really such a thing as ‘hangry’? It’s one of those modern, rather irritating portmanteau words that people like using, and it means, if you hadn’t guessed, hungry and angry. Of course, we feel two or more feelings simultaneously all the time, without needing to invent silly compound words. Someone might feel tired and irritated by we wouldn’t describe them as being ‘tirritated’, unless we were particularly smarmy and silly (or rather ‘smilly’). But back to ‘hangry’ – is there any substance to it? Well, it seems there is, according to science. If you become short-tempered, possibly while travelling home from work or while waiting for service at a restaurant, then you may be in the state of ‘hanger’ (although it’s more than likely that some gay massage could help diminish the negative emotions). And now it seems that scientists can explain the phenomenon. In a study published in the Emotion journal a few days ago, some information emerged to explain the psychological mechanisms by which hunger transforms into ‘hanger’. At the University of North Carolina, analysis was undertaken, looking into what happens when we’re hungry, and why that can lead to anger, and it turns out that it’s much more complex than a mere change in blood sugar levels.
While some of us will experience hunger, recognising that feeling of emptiness and need and then satiating it by having a sandwich, others will instead interpret the feeling of hunger on a more emotional level, superimposing that feeling over their current circumstances and then lashing out at anyone within spitting distance. One pleasing result of the study is the possibility that there may be a way of dealing with ‘hanger’, so that we don’t inadvertently go off at people who haven’t done anything wrong. What needs to be practised is a degree of self-awareness and some learning so that we recognise that the source of our discomfort is not really something emotional but merely the need to replenish oneself by eating.
A series of experiments was carried out by the researchers to establish the link between hunger and mood stability. 200 subjects were asked either to eat or to go without food prior to a test. Further to that, a sub-section of the participants was given a writing exercise designed to get them to contemplate their emotions. Afterwards, all the subjects were given what was called a ‘tedious exercise’ to be carried out on a computer. What they didn’t know was that the computer had been set up to crash just before the exercise could be finished. When this happened, one of the researchers would come into the room and immediately blame the participant for crashing the computer.
Following this experience, participants were given a questionnaire to help evaluate the way they perceived the experiment. What researchers discovered was that the individuals who’d been deprived of food reported a much more emotional experience, some of them going so far as to describe their emotional state as ‘hateful’, even when they were not in the sub-set who’d been asked to focus on emotions. Although there’s much more to be done to look at the complexities of this experiment, it’s clear that hunger really can cause anger. Making sure that, as well as benefitting from the relaxing properties of male massage London, your nutritional needs are met, is bound to give you a better emotional response to life.