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Impulsive behavior may follow weight gainWEDNESDAY, MAY 08, 2013 10:52 AM

More impulsive behavior may follow weight gain When people gain weight, it is not uncommon for feelings of frustration to follow. Based on study findings that appear in the Association for Psychological Science journal "Psychological Science," impulsivity is a trait that individuals can develop after gaining weight.

The researchers behind the study already knew that changes in people's personality can affect their weight, but they wanted to know if the opposite was true. To find out more, they looked at data on 1,900 Baltimore residents' weight changes and personality traits to see if there was a connection.

Researchers found that individuals who experienced a 10 percent increase in their body weight also showed a greater tendency to give into their temptations. Greater impulsivity was not present in those whose weight remained stable.

"If mind and body are intertwined, then if one changes the other should change too," said Angelina Sutin, a psychological scientist who worked on the study. "That's what our findings suggest."

Based on this research, individuals who have experienced significant weight gain may want to take a personality test to see if they have become more impulsive.


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