New Study Finds Students Would Rather Use Their Phones Than Eat

If you had to spend the morning without your iPhone or without breakfast, which one would you choose?

A recent study has found -- rather alarmingly -- that students would prefer to be deprived of food than spend time away from their phones.

The paper has been published in a journal called Addictive Behaviours -- and tested the "reinforcing value" of smartphones.

The study gathered 76 university students in the United States who underwent a "modest deprivation period" -- three hours without food and two hours without a phone in their hands.

During the food-free, phone-free window, the college kids were able to study, or read newspapers.

The students were then able to complete computer tasks to earn minutes to access their phones or 100-calorie portions of food.

And as much as we love a snack or two -- it seems we're more addicted to checking Instagram or replying to texts.

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Turns out the students were much happier to go without food than their phones -- with co-author Sara O'Donnell saying she was "very surprised" by the results.

“We knew that students would be motivated to gain access to their phones, but we were surprised that despite modest food deprivation, smartphone reinforcement far exceeded food reinforcement across both methodologies," O'Donnell said.

Researchers still have a long road ahead in investigating smartphone addiction, but this study proves that our phones are "highly reinforcing" according to O'Donnell.

Which basically means it's probably a good idea to put down your phone and pick up a book or take a stroll around the block once in a while!

Main Image: NBC/Giphy