Another Reason to Manage Stress
A recent study showed that women who experience high levels of stress tend to
eat food that’s high in fat after the stress is over. Study subjects were forced
to complete a variety of tasks within 25 minutes, and at the same time, they had
to listen to a high volume of noise—telephones ringing and other typical office
noises. Afterwards, when a tray of snacks was in front of them, they chose
fattier foods, such as fatty cheese and chips, instead of the lower fat choices,
like pretzels and popcorn. The higher the frustration level, the more they ate.
Women can use this knowledge to gain insight into why they eat what they eat,
and to make conscious decisions to replace the high-fat-eating response with
something different, such as deep breathing, stretching, taking a short walk,
Interestingly, men who participated in the study did not experience any
difference in eating habits based on stress levels.
Journal of Applied Social Psychology, July 2004.