Emotieregulatie en eetgedrag: hoe de regulatie van emoties eetgedrag kan beïnvloeden
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One of the core assumptions of today’s society is the belief that negative emotions lead to increased eating. The current research challenges this thought by claiming that overeating in a non-clinical population is caused not by emotions but instead by the way these emotions are regulated. To test the causal role of emotion regulation in overeating, rumination, being a dysfunctional emotion regulation strategy, was compared to the functional strategy of cognitive reappraisal. Participants were placed in a controlled laboratory setting with experimental designs and asked to recall a recent anger-provoking event. They were then instructed to think about this event by either ruminating or reappraisal. To examine the impact of both strategies on eating behavior a taste test was used with both healthy and unhealthy food types; food consumption was subsequently measured. Results showed that relative to cognitive reappraisal, rumination led to higher consumption of the unhealthy food types and greater anger experience. These findings provide new evidence that strategies of emotion regulation influence eating behavior in a non-clinical population.