Love UP, Stress Down: Who does more stress eating, men or women?
Research shows that there are gender differences in the way we cope with stress and in our relationship with food. Men tend to eat less when they are stressed, while women tend to eat more (Grunberg, Straub, 1992). Why is that? Many people are careful to eat a healthy diet all day long, but, alas, end their day by eating empty caloric food at night. Why is that? One explanation is that many people fell lonelier at night and fill this emotional gap by snacking on unhealthy, ‘comfort food’? Do you experience yourself being stressed at evening social events and trying to drown these feeling by snacking on unhealthy finger food? Dieticians confirm that eating later at night is counterproductive for weight loss. So ‘when’ you eat, even more than ‘what’ you eat, may be the big contributor to weight gain (Garaulet, 2013). So the bottom line is:
- Notice your snacking habits this holiday season.
- Choose fun over food.
- Eat your biggest meals earlier in the day.
- If you’ve been stress eating, start a journal. It’s a great way to track your habits and increase your awareness of how and why you are gaining rather than losing weight!
- Spend more time in conversation rather than isolation.
What’s your favorite snack at the end of the day?