The purpose of the current study was to examine self-reported wanting and liking of high and low calorie food images following an acute psychosocial stressor in individuals differing in body mass index (BMI). Participants (N = 51) completed the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST; Kirschbaum, Pirke, & Hellhammer, 1993) to investigate stress system response. A visual food image task assessed hedonic (i.e. liking) and motivational (i.e. wanting) responses to food images. Self-reported positive and negative affect, state anxiety, hunger, and physiological measures (Blood pressure and heart rate) were recorded. Overall, it was hypothesized that overweight and obese individuals would have higher self-reported "wanting" but not "liking" of high calorie food images as compared to normal weight individuals. The results from this study showed that acute stressors could have an impact on self-reported "wanting"� after viewing images of high calorie food. That is, individuals who were subjected to an acute stressor (n = 21) had a decrease in the "wanting" of high calorie food images (p = .035), as compared to control participants (n = 30). These findings may have basic science and clinical implications.
A Plan B Research Project submitted to the Faculty of University of Minnesota Duluth by Kaitlyn Arlene Moriarity in Partial Fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts in Psychological Sciences, April 2017.
Effects of Acute Psychosocial Stress on Self-Reported Wanting and Liking for High Calorie Foods: Role of Body Mass Index.
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