No one can deny the effect that good food has on your mood. We’re all familiar with the phrase “hangry” and have no doubt experienced the feeling ourselves at some point. When it comes to improving your mood, delicious food is one of the best remedies.
A recent study conducted by “Behavioral & Brain Lab” at Italy’s Free University of Languages and Communication IULM, in collaboration with Unione Italiana Food, has uncovered some interesting things about how humans respond emotionally and neurophysiologically to eating pasta.
To examine emotional reactions, researchers used similar methods as those employed in lie detectors. They tracked brain activity in 40 food allergy-free subjects aged 25 to 55. The results were enlightening, revealing that eating pasta activates a strong and sustained emotional-cognitive state similar to listening to music or watching sports, even surpassing those.
Pasta and happiness are inseparable according to Professor Vincenzo Russo, founder of the Neuromarketing Behavior & Brain Lab IULM. The taste alone stimulates positive memories and emotions. When consumption habits were analyzed, researchers discovered that individuals also associate eating pasta with spending time with family and friends.
In the study, 40% of participants consider pasta a comfort food and 76% confirmed that consuming it increases happiness. Additionally, science also supports the theory. It’s proven that complex carbohydrates stimulate endorphins, which help absorb the tryptophan and B vitamins present in pasta. Tryptophan helps regulate mood and B vitamins relax muscles while producing serotonin.
In other words, you now have yet another reason to love pasta.