The hunger hormone ghrelin may play a role in how a person manages their finances, according to new research to be presented by the Endocrine Society. Ghrelin stimulates the appetite, hence it is called the “hunger hormone”. The hormone itself may also have an influence on decisions made about an individual’s finances, particularly when it comes to impulsive purchases.
The study included healthy participants between the ages of 10 and 22. 34 people were in good health, while the remaining 50 were described as suffering from a “low-weight eating disorder” such as anorexia. Researchers note that these eating disorders are linked to ghrelin resistance.
As part of the study, researchers tested participants’ ghrelin levels before and after a meal, then had participants make hypothetical money decisions – including getting immediate, but smaller amounts of money, or delaying the reward for a number of days in return. For more money.
Healthy participants with higher levels of ghrelin were more likely to choose the immediate financial reward even though it was less than the delayed reward. However, researchers did not find a link between ghrelin levels and financial choices in eating disorder participants.
Study co-author Franziska Pleso, PhD, She said:
Our results indicate that ghrelin may play a broader role than previously recognized in behavior related to human reward and decision-making, such as monetary options. We hope this will inspire future research on its role in food-independent human cognition and behavior.