As Latinos get ready to don their Halloween finest the question must be asked: If you have a sweet tooth for Halloween candy or for that matter all candy, will you have a sweeter personality? You know you have to find a justification in gorging yourself in Halloween candy and we think we found one.
The findings of U.S. researchers are the if you have a sweet tooth, you may have a sweeter personality. Researchers found that people who ate chocolate were more likely to volunteer to help another person in need, compared to those who ate a cracker or no food. Another test found that people tend to believe that people who like sweet foods are also more agreeable or helpful, but not more extroverted or neurotic.
“Our results suggest there is a real link between sweet tastes and pro-social behavior. Such findings reveal that metaphors can lead to unique and provocative predictions about people’s behaviors and personality traits,” Michael D. Robinson, a psychology professor at North Dakota State University in Fargo, said in a university news release.
The study was recently published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
“It is striking that helpful and friendly people are considered ‘sweet’ because taste would seem to have little in common with personality or behavior. Yet, recent psychological theories of embodied metaphor led us to hypothesize that seemingly innocuous metaphors can be used to derive novel insights about personality and behavior,” Brian Meier, an associate professor of psychology at Gettysburg College, in Pennsylvania, said in the news release.
“Importantly, our taste studies controlled for positive mood so the effects we found are not due to the happy or rewarding feeling one may have after eating a sweet food,” he added.
Unfortunately, Meier noted that the findings might not apply across all cultures, said similar cross-cultural research would be informative.