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Appetite. 2009 Oct;53(2):256-9. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2009.07.003. Epub 2009 Jul 10.

Perimenstrual chocolate craving. What happens after menopause?

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States of America. jhormes@sas.upenn.edu

Abstract

About half of American women crave chocolate, and approximately half of the cravers crave it specifically around the onset of menstruation. This study examines whether the primary cause of this "perimenstrual" craving is a direct effect of hormonal changes around the perimenstrum, or rather if the craving is a general response in some individuals to stress or other notable events. Insofar as there is a direct hormonal effect, one would predict a substantial decrease of 38% in total chocolate craving in women post-menopause, corresponding to the proportion of women pre-menopause who report craving chocolate exclusively perimenstrually. Based on a survey of pre- and post-menopausal alumnae of the same University, we report a significant but small decrease in prevalence of chocolate cravings post-menopause. The decrease is only 13.4% and thereby much smaller than a 38% drop predicted by a purely hormonal explanation, suggesting that female reproductive hormones are not the principal cause of perimenstrual chocolate craving.

PMID:
19595725
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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