Informace o publikaci

Changes in ritualized behavior during the menstrual cycle



Rok publikování 2022
Druh Další prezentace na konferencích
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Filozofická fakulta

Popis Recent research started to examine the adaptive value of ritualized behavior and one hypothesized function includes positive effects on individual health and survival. In humans and non-human animals, ritualized behavior has been linked to states of intense stress and anxiety in a range of studies. Moreover, in humans, the emergence of ritualized behavior has been observed in situations of perceived uncertainty, be it unpredictability of physical danger or a threat to social status. It remains, however, unclear whether ritualized behavior occurs spontaneously also in common, less intense anxiogenic situations. As a suitable naturally occurring condition allowing within-subject comparison, we used state anxiety fluctuations within the menstrual cycle, specifically the luteal phase anxiety and stress changes, as possible sources of spontaneous ritualization. In a pre-registered longitudinal study (36 days), free-cycling female participants regularly marked their day of the cycle, symptoms connected with the menstrual cycle, levels of anxiety, and activities they performed. These activities were evaluated by independent coders on the characteristics of ritualized behavior. The main prediction of the study is that psychological changes, specifically heightened anxiety, and perceived stress during the luteal phase, would lead to both an increase in the types of ritualized behaviors and higher intensity of those behaviors. We report on the results and how they connect to the theorized anxiety management function of ritual systems.
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