State impulsivity amplifies urges without diminishing self-control

Simon Thomas van Baal, Neda Moskovsky, Jakob Hohwy, Antonio Verdejo-García

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


A disproportionate amount of research on impulsivity has focused on trait-related aspects rather than state fluctuations. As a result, the relationship between state impulsivity and moment-to-moment behaviour is unclear. Impulsivity is assumed to negatively affect self-control, but an alternative explanation, yet to be tested, could be that changes in state impulsivity and its homeostatic drivers influence the intensity of urges. We tested whether state impulsivity and hunger affected behaviour through a dual-process model, affecting both the experience of various urges, and self-control, using a smartphone-based experience sampling approach. We found that state impulsivity is associated with stronger urges, but we found no evidence of an association with diminished self-control. Being hungry amplifies urges across different types of urges, and both hunger and late hours are negatively related to the likelihood of controlling urges. These findings imply that the influence of hunger is not limited to the food domain, and provide new insight into the role of state impulsivity in daily life.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107381
Number of pages9
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


  • Craving
  • Ecological momentary assessment
  • Hunger
  • Impulsivity
  • Self-control
  • Urges

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