The Hunger-Ending Ripple Effect: Study Shows Financial Decision Making Improves with Proper Nourishment.

August 25, 2010 § Leave a comment

Ending hunger has many personal and societal benefits.  Children are in a better position to learn, people don’t get sick as often, communities reap the economic benefits of a more productive workforce, and our volunteer military can recruit from a larger pool of applicants.

But did you know that ending hunger can also mean less risky financial decisions?

A recent study demonstrated that people who are hungry make riskier financial decisions than those who have recently eaten. And, the difference in decision making before and after food consumption was almost immediate.

The study also suggests a link between hunger and obesity in decision making.  The men in the study with lower body mass index (BMI) didn’t change their attitude toward risk after consuming a meal, but those with a higher BMI took more risks after eating.  Read the study here.

The study authors conclude:

“This is information we all may benefit from, as we understand how access to food, and living without anxiety about having access to food can improve the number of opportunities in our day.  It could be a first impression, or a test taken at school, or an exam you need to advance your career.”

When you’re living from paycheck to paycheck it’s expensive to be poor, and hunger just makes things worse. This Washington Post article explains that the poor pay more because they have limited access to opportunities that can stretch their dollar and time.  CAFB client, Bruk, explains as he waits in line at a soup kitchen, “There are a lot of things that stress us out from being on the streets and taking food off of that equation is really, really helpful.”

CAFB President & CEO, David Davenport also blogged about his poor decision making abilities in his humorous, yet sobering late night conversation with a can of tomato sauce during week three of his food stamp challenge.

Bottom line, decision making under the influence of hunger is hard and risky.   Together, we can set families up for financial success by ensuring they have access to nutritious food at all times.

How has temporary hunger affected your decision making abilities?

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You are currently reading The Hunger-Ending Ripple Effect: Study Shows Financial Decision Making Improves with Proper Nourishment. at Capital Area Food Bank of Texas Blog.

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