A preference for the bitter taste? The sign of a narcissistic and sadistic personality

A singular study reveals that a preference for bitterness may indicate a tendency toward psychopathic, narcissistic, and sadistic behavior.

Do gin and tonic, strong coffee and endive lovers have a dark side? One study examined the extent to which the preference for bitterness was associated with the tendency towards sadistic and psychopathic behavior. Five hundred US participants ranked from a list of salty, sour, sweet or bitter flavored foods based on their personal preferences. Chocolate cake, bacon, vinegar and radishes are some examples of foods on the list.

Bitterness: An increased risk of psychopathic behavior

Personality tests were then carried out. First, the tendency to aggressiveness was measured via a result based on certain declarations. The tests aimed to probe a Machiavellian, narcissistic or sadistic personality. The level of extroversion, agreeableness, caring and emotional stability were also checked. Finally, the tendency to daily sadism was defined. The study concludes that the preference for bitterness may indicate a higher risk of Machiavellian, narcissistic or sadistic behaviors.

Lack of sympathetic and cooperative behaviors

A second study confirms the possible association of the preference for bitter flavors with the sensitivity to ambiguous, conceited and selfish behaviors, as well as the pleasure derived from the suffering of others and the arousal of fear. The study also showed a negative correlation between the preference for bitter flavors and the appearance of sympathetic and cooperative behaviors.

Foods with a bitter taste include: arugula, bitter cucumber, chicory, dandelions, spinach, endive, watercress, gentian root, chocolate powder without sugar, walnuts and milk thistle.

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Sagioglou C. et al: Individual differences in bitter taste preferences are associated with antisocial personality traits. Appetite


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