We’ve all been there. There’s nothing to snack on, hunger levels are rising and then someone says the “wrong thing” at the wrong moment and we snap. Had we had a snack, we probably wouldn’t have. Sound familiar? That’s hanger for you.
Hanger is a term coined to explain why people get grumpy when they get hungry. Hunger + anger = hanger, get it?
But, why does that happen and why do some people get it worse than others?
There are two main things at play: blood sugar levels and genetics. Let’s start with the first.
When you eat, your food is digested into your bloodstream as simple sugars (aka glucose). However, as time passes, the level of sugar begins to drop. As this happens your brain perceives the dropping levels as “life-threatening” because the brain is dependent on glucose to function (don’t worry, you’re not actually dying – you just need to eat). This results in things becoming more difficult for you – it can be harder to have concise thoughts, it makes you tired and you can have a shorter fuse resulting in classic hanger. Basically, your brain is calling out for a biscuit.
The other reason is good old genetics. Neuropeptide Y is a natural brain chemical that acts to control hunger but also happens to work in part to regulate anger and aggression. So, those with higher levels of Neuropeptide Y tend to have higher levels of impulse anger. When they’re hungry, therefore, they’re much more likely to snap.
So what’s the solution besides eating? Make sure that you don’t just snack on sugary foods. Usually, these are the ones that we crave when we need energy. We’ll chomp on what’s closest but, more often than not, “easy” foods are ready-made, processed foods that are stuffed with sugar. Sure, this leads to a soar in energy but it will result in an even quicker crash and so the dreaded hanger cycle will start all over again. The best thing you can do is eat slow-release energy foods like fruit, vegetables, pulses, dairy and meat.
No more snapping, y’all!
Taken from GLAMOUR UK. Click here to read the original.
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