Healthy Eating

Unhealthy Eating Can Make a Bad Mood Worse

02C86881That was the conclusion of this Penn State study posted over the weekend, which is odd because Hollywood has told me that the best cure for the blues was a tub of mint chocolate chip ice cream and a Netflix RomCom queue 3 miles long. Actually, I might be okay sticking to this tried and true method as the new study pertains specifically to women:

In a study, college-age women who were concerned about their eating behaviors reported that moods worsened after bouts of disordered eating, said Kristin Heron, research associate at the Survey Research Center.

“There was little in the way of mood changes right before the unhealthy eating behaviors,” said Heron. “However, negative mood was significantly higher after these behaviors.”

Well, there’s not much of a surprise there, actually. Usually I feel guilty after overindulging on one thing or another. So, does eating healthier mean the flip side of the coin? Making healthier decisions while in a bad mood will make you feel better?

Unfortunately, not the case.

The researchers…detected little change in the participants’ moods prior to unhealthy eating. While negative mood was worse after disordered eating, a positive mood did not change either before or after any of the behaviors studied by the researchers.

This study wanted to add a little research into the lives of average women as most studies occur in a lab environment and deal mainly with people suffering from eating disorders.

“This study is unique because it evaluates moods and eating behaviors as they occur in people’s daily lives, which can provide a more accurate picture of the relationship between emotions and eating,”

So, I guess next time life is getting you down, avoiding the double chocolate brownie fudge cake might not make things any better, but at least it’s not making you feel worse. It’s all about the small victories.

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