Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 


Quakes: Women Turned To Unhealthy Food To Cope With Stress

Women Turned To Unhealthy Food To Cope With Stress After The Quakes, UC Research Finds

March 26, 2013

Christchurch women’s eating habits became unhealthier after the earthquakes to cope with stress, a University of Canterbury (UC) researcher has found.

UC psychology expert Dr Roeline Kuijer said Christchurch women who suffered post-traumatic stress after the quakes reported unhealthier eating habits and were more likely to choose food for mood and familiarity reasons.

``Women with higher levels of self-control were more likely to maintain choosing food for health reasons and natural content. Scores on an earthquake impact index - looking at issues like damage, financial strain, whether or not people had power or water - was unrelated to changes in eating habits or motives for food choice.

``This is the first study in New Zealand and possibly internationally that has examined eating habits and food choices before and after a natural disaster.

``Our study started in 2007 but the focus changed after February 2011 and it became a study that looked at health, well-being and especially eating habits because of the earthquakes.

``The fact that we had participants before the earthquakes makes this study unique. There are very few studies in the international literature that have been able to follow people from before to after a natural disaster.

``They were all Canterbury residents mostly middle aged and 75 percent of them were women. For the research questions relating to eating habits only the responses of women were used.

``We asked them what they ate each day, whether they ate junk food and how much they ate. Until after the earthquakes eating habits were fairly stable. Following the February 2011 earthquake participants started reporting unhealthier eating patterns.

``We were interested in whether food choice had changed after the quakes. What they loved to eat to help them cope with stress, easy food to prepare and familiarity became more important in their food choice,’’ Dr Kuijer said.

Respondents mostly preferred food that made them happy and natural content became less important.

``These findings are important as the short-term negative effects associated with an unhealthy diet, such as low energy and low mood, may make coping in the aftermath of a disaster even more difficult,’’ Dr Kuijer said.


Photos: UC’s Dr Roeline Kuijier

website: www.canterbury.ac.nz


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Game Review: Until Dawn - Pick Your Own Horrible Adventure

Supermassive Games’ Until Dawn sees a group of dumb sexy teenagers take a trip to a spooky mansion atop a mountain. It is, obviously, a horror game. However, the game is so ridiculous it turns out to be more of a comedy. More>>

John McBeth: Our World Cup All Blacks

Forty or fifty years ago nobody really had any idea of what the selectors had in mind. There were often several trials, which sometimes featured over 150 players, possibly an inter island match or a final trial, then we listened to the announcement of the team on radio. The players weren't flown into the capital for a parliamentary function... More>>

ALSO:

Game Review: Midsomer Murders Meets First Year Philosophy

Developed by The Chinese Room, Everybody's Gone to the Rapture sees the player exploring what appears to be a recently abandoned idyllic English village trying to figure out where everybody's gone. Spoiler: they've gone to the rapture. (On a serious note, this review contains plot spoilers.) More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Clear Science

It was really after his move to Wellington, to Victoria University, that it became apparent that Sir Paul Cllaghan was much more than an eminent physicist... More>>

ALSO:

Francis Cook: Weekend SportzMania! All Blacks! Netball!

Sports were on all weekend. I normally don’t write about sports but with Richie McCaw tipped to be the next Prime Minister, and Colin Craig arguing sports are almost as important as politics, I thought “what better time to start!” More>>

ALSO:

Beervana: Aussie Pav Beer Declared Taste Of NZ

In a surprising upset, an Australian beer modelled on the pavlova, created by Brisbane brewery Newstead Brewing, the 250 Beers blog and Scratch Bar, has been announced the winner at the Beervana craft beer festival ‘Flag Brew’ competition, which challenged media and brewing teams to capture the distinctive taste of New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Education
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news