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Thread: Eating Habits and the Big Five

  1. #1
    .~ *aĉa virino* ~. Array Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Default Eating Habits and the Big Five

    High neurotics, low conscientiousers, and extroverts, beware.

    ...For the study, published in the journal Appetite, researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology sent three questionnaires — one on personality, one on eating habits, and one on food choices — to a random sample of addresses. After excluding subjects who skipped more than 10 percent of the questions, data from nearly a thousand participants (with an average age of 55 years old) was analyzed.

    The personality questions were designed to measure what psychologists believe are the five basic dimensions of personality — openness, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. The researchers were curious whether, and to what extent, high or low scores on these different traits would correlate with certain eating habits.

    "We found that a person’s personality does, in fact, determine why he or she eats and what he or she eats,” said Carmen Keller, the study’s lead author. For one thing, "A lack of conscientiousness leads people to eat impulsively and to lose self-control in the face of tempting food situations with palatable and nicely smelling and tasting food," she explained. In addition, "Neurotic people may eat too much high-caloric food to deal with their negative emotions." Extroversion, which, unlike neuroticism or a lack of conscientiousness tends to have mostly positive connotations in society, was also linked to potentially unhealthy eating habits...
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  2. #2
    won't be missed Array /DG/'s Avatar
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    I already know I eat like shit, but I do it impulsively and not to soothe my negative emotions (extremely neurotic here). I don't have willpower against things like that. Thank goodness I don't do any drugs.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array great_bay's Avatar
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    So are type sevens likely to be overweight?

  4. #4
    Seal Down Array Hard's Avatar
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    Well, my conscientiousness is rather high so that doesn't apply. However I have high-ish neuroticism, and high extroversion.

    I am not overweight though. My weight has either been underweight, or where it should be for all of my life. Granted I am only 25, and no one on either side of my family is even a little overweight so I do have biology on my side. My eating habits are iffy though. I can ignore hunger very easily, and if needed can skip a full day if not more without eating. I can't explain why, but the feeling of being hungry, while unpleasant, is just something I can push out of my mind and roll on with. When I eat, I tend to eat quite a lot. That's largely because I eat once or twice a day, so I need to get a lot in at those times. As for what I eat, I don't really care or pay attention much though. I eat things that taste good. So long as I do not suffer ill effects over the long term I will eat it.

    I can see how these traits would be linked to eating habits though. A lot of it comes down to self-control and a "discomfort tolerance" of sorts. The three traits as listed would suggest being poor in these areas. As with anything though, not always.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Array Jaguar's Avatar
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    May 2007


    *Heads to freezer for Ben and Jerry's*
    If this is the best of possible worlds, what then are the others?
    ― Voltaire, Candide
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