Hunger is a powerful force! Not only can it make you 'hangry' but it can also cause you to shop. It makes perfect sense that if you go food shopping when you're hungry you're likely to buy more food, but it turns out that hunger can drive all kinds of shopping and acquisition.
A team of researchers at the University of Minnesota ran five different studies to explore the relationship between hunger and acquisition and the results of each study showed a strong correlation between hunger and acquiring both food and non-food items.
For example, in one study half of a group of hungry participants were given cake to eat. Then everyone was shown some binder clips and asked how much they liked them and whether they wanted to take some for free. Hunger didn't seem to affect how much participants liked the binder clips, but those who were hungry took 70% more than those who had eaten cake.
So, the bottom line is - eat before you shop!
- Hunger Makes You Buy More Stuff, Even If It's Not Food by Brian Handwerk, Smithsonian.com
- Hunger Promotes Acquisition of Nonfood Objects by Allison Jing Xu et al., PNAS (abstract free, full text behind paywall)