In contrast to people in traditional societies, people in contemporary societies often eat not on account of hunger but because tasty food is available.The widespread advertising of such food also bombards the consumer with the temptation to eat.
But the findings of the new study by David Gal from University of Illinois at Chicago suggest that it might be healthier for individuals to eat when they are moderately hungry than when they are not hungry.
The individuals participating in the study were 45 undergraduate students.
They were first asked to rate their level of hunger and then to consume a meal rich in carbohydrates.
To measure how the meal was impacting participants' health, participants' blood glucose levels were measured at regular intervals after they consumed the meal.
Blood glucose levels tend to rise after a meal containing carbohydrates and it is generally healthier if blood glucose levels rise by a relatively small amount because elevated blood glucose is damaging to the body's cells.
The results of the study showed that individuals who were moderately hungry before the meal tended to have lower blood glucose levels after consuming the meal than individuals who were not particularly hungry before consuming the meal.
The study was published in the Journal of the Association for Consumer Research.