The moderating effects of mindfulness facets on psychological distress and emotional eating behaviour


  • Diarmuid Verrier Sheffield Hallam University
  • Catherine Day Sheffield Hallam University

Słowa kluczowe:

mindfulness, emotional eating, stress, anxiety, depression



Emotional eating is an impulsive mood-regulation strategy that often follows psychological distress. Mindfulness is associated with less impulsive behaviour. Mindful eating involves a considered awareness of hunger and satiety, and conscious, non-automatic, food choices. This study examines the moderating role of mindfulness on the relationship between distress and emotional eating.

Participants and procedure

Participants (N = 392) completed self-report measures on distress, mindfulness and emotional eating, after which moderation analysis was carried out.


Mindfulness was negatively associated with emotional eating, but only when distress was low. The most important facets of mindfulness for this were being able to describe one’s emotional state and a non-judgemental response to that state.


These results support previous findings that mindfulness reduces the impact distress has on emotional eating. Future research could explore interventions that enable individuals to describe their emotional state in the moment to reduce preoccupation with food during times of distress.


Download data is not yet available.


Baer, R. A., Smith, G. T., Hopkins, J., Krietemeyer, J., & Toney, L. (2006). Using self-report assessment methods to explore facets of mindfulness. Assessment, 13, 27–45. 1073191105283504.

Bongers, P., & Jansen, A. (2016). Emotional eating is not what you think it is and emotional eating scales do not measure what you think they measure. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, 1932. https://doi. org/10.3389/fpsyg.2016.01932.

Brown, K. W., & Ryan, R. M. (2003). The benefits of being present: Mindfulness and its role in psychological well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 822–848. 10.1037/0022-3514.84.4.822.

Button, K. S., Ioannidis, J. P. A., Mokrysz, C., Nosek, B. A., Flint, J., Robinson, E. S. J., & Munado, M. R. (2013). Power failure: Why small sample size undermines the reliability of neuroscience. Nature Reviews: Neuroscience, 14, 365–376. https://

Clark-Carter, D. (2009). Quantitative psychological research: The complete student’s companion. Taylor and Francis.

Cohen, J. E. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Faul, F., Erdfelder, E., Buchner, A., & Lang, A. G. (2009). Statistical power analyses using G* Power 3.1: Tests for correlation and regression analyses. Behavior Research Methods, 41, 1149–1160. https://

Grohmann, D., & Laws, K. R. (2021). Two decades of mindfulness-based interventions for binge eating: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 149, 110592. https://doi. org/10.1016/j.jpsychores.2021.110592.

Höppener, M. M., Larsen, J. K., van Strien, T., Ouwens, M. A., Winkens, L. H., & Eisinga, R. (2019). Depressive symptoms and emotional eating: Mediated by mindfulness? Mindfulness, 10, 670–678.

Kabat-Zinn, J. (1994). Wherever you go, there you are: Mindfulness meditation in everyday life. Hyperion Books.

Karlsson, J., Persson, L. O., Sjöström, L., & Sullivan, M. (2000). Psychometric properties and factor structure of the Three-Factor Eating Questionnaire (TFEQ) in obese men and women. Results from the Swedish Obese Subjects (SOS) study. International Journal of Obesity, 24, 1715–1725.

Lattimore, P., Fisher, N., & Malinowski, P. (2011). A cross-sectional investigation of trait disinhibition and its association with mindfulness and impulsivity. Appetite, 56, 241–248. 10.1016/j.appet.2010.12.007.

Lovibond, P. F., & Lovibond, S. H. (1995). The structure of negative emotional states: Comparison of the Depression Anxiety Stress Scales (DASS) with the Beck Depression and Anxiety Inventories. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 33, 335–343. https://

Mantzios, M. (2020). (Re)defining mindful eating into mindful eating behaviour to advance scientific enquiry. Nutrition and Health. https://doi. org/10.1177/0260106020984091.

Mantzios, M., & Giannou, K. (2019). A real-world application of short mindfulness-based practices: a review and reflection of the literature and a practical proposition for an effortless mindful lifestyle. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 13, 520–525.

Ouwens, M. A., Schiffer, A. A., Visser, L. I., Raeijmaekers, N. J., & Nyklíček, I. (2015). Mindfulness and eating behaviour styles in morbidly obese males and females. Appetite, 87, 62–67. 10.1016/j.appet.2014.11.030.

Park, T., Reilly-Spong, M., & Gross, C. R. (2013). Mindfulness: a systematic review of instruments to measure an emergent patient-reported outcome (PRO). Quality of Life Research, 22, 2639–2659.

Pidgeon, A., Lacota, K., & Champion, J. (2013). The moderating effects of mindfulness on psychological distress and emotional eating behaviour. Australian Psychologist, 48, 262–269. https://doi. org/10.1111/j.1742-9544.2012.00091.x.

Ricca, V., Castellini, G., Fioravanti, G., Lo Sauro, C., Rotella, F., Ravaldi, C., Lazzeretti, L., & Faravelli, C. (2012). Emotional eating in anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. Comprehensive Psychiatry, 53, 245–251. 2011.04.062.

Rau, H. K., & Williams, P. G. (2016). Dispositional mindfulness: a critical review of construct validation research. Personality and Individual Differences, 93, 32–43.

Sala, M., Rochefort, C., Lui, P. P., & Baldwin, A. S. (2020). Trait mindfulness and health behaviours: a meta-analysis. Health Psychology Review, 14, 345– 393.

Schäfer, T., & Schwarz, M. A. (2019). The meaningfulness of effect sizes in psychological research: Differences between sub-disciplines and the impact of potential biases. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 813.

Shapiro, S. L., & Carlson, L. E. (2009). The art and science of mindfulness: Integrating mindfulness into psychology and the helping professions. APA Publications.

Tak, S. R., Hendrieckx, C., Nefs, G., Nyklíček, I., Speight, J., & Pouwer, F. (2015). The association between types of eating behaviour and dispositional mindfulness in adults with diabetes. Results from Diabetes MILES. The Netherlands. Appetite, 87, 288–295.

Tapper, K. (2017). Can mindfulness influence weight management related eating behaviors? If so, how? Clinical Psychology Review, 53, 122–134. https://

Tomlinson, E., Yousaf, R., Vittersø, O., & Jones, A. (2018). Dispositional mindfulness and psychological health: a systematic review. Mindfulness, 9, 23- 43.

van Strien, T., Frijters, J. E., Bergers, G. P., & Defares, P. B. (1986). The Dutch Eating Behavior Questionnaire (DEBQ) for assessment of restrained, emotional, and external eating behavior. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 5, 295–315.;2-T.

Wallis, D. J., & Hetherington, M. M. (2009). Emotions and eating. Self-reported and experimentally induced changes in food intake under stress. Appetite, 52, 355–362. 2008.11.007.



Jak cytować

Verrier, D., & Day, C. (2022). The moderating effects of mindfulness facets on psychological distress and emotional eating behaviour. Health Psychology Report, 10(2), 103–110. Pobrano z