London - Here’s a good reason to get up a little earlier - honestly.

According to scientists, we become less able to resist temptation as the day wears on and our energy levels run down – and are at our most honest and ethical before lunch.

Researchers from Harvard and the University of Utah studied the “morning morality effect” by giving a series of tests to 327 men and women. In one, participants were asked to solve maths problems and report how many they got right, earning a fee for each correct answer.

They didn’t know some of the problems were impossible, making it easy to see when they were lying. And they lied far more in the afternoon than in the morning.

Depending on the tests, people were between 20 and 50 percent more likely to cheat after lunch.

The authors – Maryam Kouchaki and Isaac Smith – wrote in the journal Psychological Science that particularly honest people were most susceptible. While those who felt little guilt were likely to cheat at any time, those with higher ethical standards were prone to slipping later in the day. - Daily Mail