Date of this Version


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

Published version

Stapleton, P., & Mackay, E. (2015). Feeding feelings: Is there a relationship between emotional eating and body mass index in adults? The International Journal of Healing and Caring, 15(3), 1-10.

Access the journal

Copyright © 2015 IJHC. All rights reserved.

2015 HERDC submission




The present study aimed to investigate the relationship between emotional eating and body mass index (BMI) in an international sample of healthy weight, overweight, and obese adults (N = 226). It was hypothesised emotional eating scores would differ significantly between the BMI classification groups. Consistent with expectations, ANCOVA results revealed significant differences in emotional eating scores across weight groups, after controlling for gender. Post-hoc analyses revealed participants who were overweight or obese reported higher emotional eating levels than participants who were normal weight. An analysis of variance indicated that being over the age of 50 was the strongest predictor of BMI, however emotional eating scores were identified as the second strongest predictor. Contributions and limitations of the present study, as well as recommendations for future research are also discussed.



This document has been peer reviewed.


To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.