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Psychol Bull. 2016 May;142(5):546-67. doi: 10.1037/bul0000035. Epub 2015 Dec 14.

A meta-analysis of blood glucose effects on human decision making.

Author information

1
Department of Management/MAPP, Aarhus University.
2
Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania.

Abstract

The academic and public interest in blood glucose and its relationship to decision making has been increasing over the last decade. To investigate and evaluate competing theories about this relationship, we conducted a psychometric meta-analysis on the effect of blood glucose on decision making. We identified 42 studies relating to 4 dimensions of decision making: willingness to pay, willingness to work, time discounting, and decision style. We did not find a uniform influence of blood glucose on decision making. Instead, we found that low levels of blood glucose increase the willingness to pay and willingness to work when a situation is food related, but decrease willingness to pay and work in all other situations. Low levels of blood glucose increase the future discount rate for food; that is, decision makers become more impatient, and to a lesser extent increase the future discount rate for money. Low levels of blood glucose also increase the tendency to make more intuitive rather than deliberate decisions. However, this effect was only observed in situations unrelated to food. We conclude that blood glucose has domain-specific effects, influencing decision making differently depending on the relevance of the situation to acquiring food. (PsycINFO Database Record.

PMID:
26653865
DOI:
10.1037/bul0000035
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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