Science Finds You're More Likely To Crave Dessert After Exercise

​A new study has found the body is more attracted to dessert after exercise to replenish burnt calories


After a long run or HIIT session at the gym, it's tempting to raid the fridge and indulge in a large bowl of New York Cheesecake because, after all, you've earnt it. Right? 

But, it doesn't take long for the guilt to creep in at the thought of undoing all your hard work.

Well, forget the guilt because a new scientific study has found that exercise makes people more likely to crave dessert.


The research – published in the Journal of Health Psychology – recruited 88 university students for a test to measure their automatic reactions to certain objects.

The volunteers were given a joystick and made to look at pictures of desserts as well as everyday household items such as lightbulbs and clocks.

If the joystick pulled towards the volunteer's body, it suggested an indication of positive feelings towards the object.


Afterwards, half the subjects were made to workout on a stationary bike while the others took a series of memory tests. Then they were made to complete the same joystick test.

According to the results, participants who exercised were found to be more attracted to dessert in the second test than those who didn't exercise.

The researchers suggest this means their bodies were desperate to refill with the calories they'd just lost through exercise. 

This might explain why we're so eager to reach for a Maryland cookie (okay, five) after an hour in the gym. 

Cheers, science. 

Read Next: