The Huron University College Journal of Learning and Motivation

Article Title

Sex Differences in the Effects of Stress-Induced Eating


Katie Christie


Previous research has found that restrained eaters, emotional eaters and females will eat more under stress. The current study examined sex differences in the effects of stress-induced eating. Participants were randomly assigned to a high or low-induced stress situation. Both groups, with equal numbers of males and females, solved anagrams and were given the opportunity to eat candy. A 5-minute time limit was held constant across both conditions. The high stress group was constantly reminded o f their strict time limit and performed the experiment with a loud timer ticking in the background; while the low stress group had neither o f these distractions. Participants filled out a self-reported stress question response as a manipulation check. These data, and amounts of candy eaten for each sex under both conditions were recorded. In the high stress condition, males ate less and females ate more; however, these effects were not statistically significant. Females also consumed significantly more candy in both conditions than males.

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