Individual stress (such as food and non-food related) is regulated by exposure to the environment (1,9). These environments mostly depend on professional and personal settings as well as relationships among members. Those determine an individual’s conform zone or levels. Thus, it may regulate quality and quantity, especially diversity of food intake (2,3,4). As a result, food intake patterns may be regulated in the short-mid and long term which may affect individuals’ as well as groups’ health and nutritional status (5).
Let’s think differently about opportunities for regulations of fluctuations in stress-mediated food intake in our existing environments:
We usually observe or feel distinct levels of stress in the exposed environments we spend our time in. Here are some examples of where you may feel the differences (1).
- Stress levels in personal settings such as stress in one or more family member(s).
- Stress levels in professional settings such as stress in one or more colleague(s).
- Stress levels in transport among one or multiple passenger(s).
- Stress levels in the playing zone among one or more player(s).
- Stress levels in diverse cultural or religious settings among one or many follower(s).
- Stress levels in economic crisis such as unemployed or underemployed.
- Stress levels in natural or man-made disasters such as earthquakes, floods, war, pollution, etc.
Intentional and unintentional regulation of food, health, care, and other factors related to stress may reduce or increase the total stress levels of an individual, which may induce or inhibit food intake patterns and quantity by regulating moods (1, 6,7,8).
Let’s create or support the development of stress-free or less stressed environments for food and nonfood-mediated promotion and protection of the quality as well as standard of living.
*Featured image credit goes to https://www.pexels.com
- Stress and Health | The Nutrition Source | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
- Why stress causes people to overeat – Harvard Health
- Stress and Eating Behaviors – PMC (nih.gov)
- Nutrition and Stress: A Two-way Street – American Society for Nutrition
- Stress, dietary restraint and food intake – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Effects of Chronic Social Stress on Obesity – PMC (nih.gov)
- Microsoft Word – Shina’s PhD Thesis Corrections.docx (uwa.edu.au)
- Linking What We Eat to Our Mood: A Review of Diet, Dietary Antioxidants, and Depression – PMC (nih.gov)
- The Stress-Diet Connection – Tufts Health & Nutrition Letter
- What is Stress? – The American Institute of Stress
If you are interested to learn more, please visit the following links:
Stress: “The term “stress”, as it is currently used was coined by Hans Selye in 1936, who defined it as “the non-specific response of the body to any demand for change”.” (10)