Hungry and aggressive? Blame serotoninJune 6th, 2008 - 11:55 am ICT by IANS
London, June 6 (IANS) Ever wonder why you sometimes turn aggressive when you are extremely hungry? The culprit may be serotonin, or rather the lack of it. Low serotonin levels have long been associated with depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder and severe anxiety, but a new study says it is also linked to impulsiveness - and to aggression.
The essential amino acid required for the creation of serotonin can only be obtained through your diet. Consequently, serotonin levels decline when we don’t eat, a fact noted by researchers.
Hence the link between hunger and aggression.
The study also provides an insight into clinical disorders characterised by low serotonin levels, such as depression and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and may help explain some of the social difficulties associated with these disorders.
This research suggests that patients with depression and anxiety disorders may benefit from therapies that teach them strategies for regulating emotions during decision-making, particularly in social scenarios.
Molly Crockett, who conducted the research, said: “Our results suggest that serotonin plays a critical role in social decision-making by normally keeping aggressive social responses in check.
“Changes in diet and stress cause our serotonin levels to fluctuate naturally, so it’s important to understand how this might affect our everyday decision-making.”
- Feel-good transmitter levels in brain determine anger - Sep 19, 2011
- Brain chemical linked to obsessive compulsive disorder found - Apr 27, 2010
- Early recognition, treatment can control obsessive-compulsive disorder - Apr 02, 2011
- Excessive ritualism linked to mental disorder - Dec 29, 2011
- Kidney disease gene linked to debilitating mental disorder - Jan 05, 2011
- PANDAS are not a big fan of stress - Apr 11, 2010
- OCD linked to common childhood illness - Oct 21, 2010
- Early treatment can cure compulsive handwashing - Apr 04, 2011
- Clutter hoarding may run in one's family - Sep 26, 2009
- Antidepressants taken by autistic kids may have serious side effects - Aug 08, 2010
- Deep brain stimulation shows promise for OCD - Oct 05, 2010
- Diet linked to onset of mental illness - Dec 14, 2010
- Deep brain stimulation may effectively treat Tourette's syndrome - Oct 28, 2009
- Serotonin 'influences how we judge couples' intimacy - Apr 15, 2011
- A new method to target obsessive behaviour - Apr 11, 2012
Tags: aggression, anxiety disorders, check changes, critical role, culprit, decline, depression, emotions, essential amino acid, hunger, insight, low serotonin levels, molly, obsessive compulsive disorder, ocd, severe anxiety, social decision, social difficulties, social responses, social scenarios