As people are relatively incompetent in assessing the impact of visceral states on their behavior, two studies tested the hypothesis that hunger affects the extent to which people assess themselves as external eaters. In Study 1 participants' current self-reported hunger states were linked to their scores on an external eating scale. Hungrier participants perceived themselves more strongly as external eaters. In Study 2 hunger was experimentally manipulated, after which self-reported external eating was assessed. Hunger was found to affect people's self-reported external eating status, such that hungry participants scored higher and above the average norm score on external eating compared to satiated participants, who scored below this average norm score. The key implications of these findings are discussed.
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