Hangry

Angie Szumlinski News

The word hangry is a colloquial term referring to the notion that people become angry when hungry. In a study published in PLOS ONE, the thought that people have greater feelings of anger and irritability when hungry was proven to be true, somewhat. The results of the study provide evidence that everyday levels of hunger are indeed associated with negative emotionality and support the notion of “hangry!” 

I, for one, tend to become irritable when I’m hungry, so I was somewhat relieved that the study didn’t find women to be more prone to “hanger,” but rather found that the association between hunger and negative feelings were stable across many demographics including participant age, sex, BMI, dietary behavior, and trait anger. Yep, this means that each and every one of us can experience hanger, it isn’t isolated to a specific group, gender, etc. During the study, participants answered a survey five times a day for 21 days that included questions like “how hungry are you”, “how irritable do you feel”, etc. Sure, self-reported data is just that, self-reported, however the validation phase of the study based on the results of the surveys, supported that “hanger” is real! 

At the end of the day, many of us experience drops in blood glucose levels when we go too long without food. When this happens, we can experience anxiety, irritability, anger, shakiness, etc. Could these be signs of “hanger” looming? Absolutely! Maybe the true meaning of “hanger” is something we have all known about for centuries, no food, no glucose = hanger! Okay, I am not a scientist, but it makes sense to me, how about you? Now go eat your 3 squares a day (and not Hershey squares) and see if you have fewer episodes of “hanger” and let me know! Stay the course, stay well, and stay informed!