A research team has determined that those fond of bitter foods and gin are not only linked to psychopathic behavior but also to sadism, Machiavellianism and narcissism. Photo: Getty

Is your drink of choice gin and tonic? Maybe its gin on the rocks. In any case, a research team has determined that those who are fond of the alcoholic beverage may possess personality traits of a psychopath.

Scientist found that people who prefer bitter food like dark chocolate and arugula, as well as drink black coffee and gin, are not only linked to psychopathic behavior but also to sadism, Machiavellianism and narcissism. Researchers from Innsbruck University in Austria found that while most people are typically turned off by bitter foods, associating the taste with poison, psychopaths are attracted to it. In the 2015 study, 1,000 participants were asked to complete a questionnaire about their personality traits, determining if they were linked to psychopathic tendencies.

Participants were also asked to rank a list of foods and drinks, the results of the two studies determined that the preference for bitter taste is linked to everyday sadism and antisocial personality traits. Some examples of the statements participants were asked to rate were “I tend to want others to pay attention to me,” “I tend to manipulate others to get my way,” “I tend to be callous or insensitive” and “I enjoy tormenting people.”

“Everyday sadism is a construct related to benign Masochism – the enjoyment of painful activities – which was first described and investigated by psychologist Paul Rozin: ‘For the case of innately aversive foods, there may be pleasure from the fact that the body is signaling rejection, but the person knows there is no real threat,’” Christina Sagioglou, the author of the study stated.

Researchers found that the results demonstrated a powerful relationship between the likeliness of sadistic tendencies and the enjoyment of bitter tasting foods and drinks. The point of the study was to explore the association between personality traits and sense of taste with the main goal to investigate the correlation between darker personalities and bitter tasting food.

“In line with our hypothesis, general bitter taste preferences were positively associated with psychopathy, everyday sadism, trait aggression, and negatively associated with agreeableness. Moreover, bitter taste preferences were significantly correlated with the other taste preferences (although negatively with sweet taste preferences),” the study stated.

While gin is known for being consumed by people in their 40s, the bitter alcoholic beverage has recently become more popular with a younger crowd. In the past 12 months, 42 percent of adults in the U.K. aged 18 to 34 years old have been consuming the beverage compared to 27 percent of those over 45 years old, The Guardian reported.