‘When the Chips Are Down’: the Relation Between Stress, Social Support, and Food Product Attitudes

Previous research has shown that decision-making strategies and attitudes are often influenced by affective states (e.g., Clore et al. 2005; Isen 2001). In the present studies, we propose that stress can be such an affective state that influences (product) evaluations. Based on the self-regulation model (Baumeister, Heatheron, and Tice 1994), we hypothesized that stress leads to more positive attitudes towards unhealthy food products and more negative attitudes towards healthy food products. In addition, we argued that social support moderates this relationship. The results of these studies confirmed our hypotheses by showing that stress leads to a higher preferences for unhealthy food products, particularly for individuals who are unsatisfied with their social support. The findings have important implications for the understanding of consumer attitudes and decision-making processes.


Claartje L. ter Hoeven and Marieke L. Fransen (2008) ,"‘When the Chips Are Down’: the Relation Between Stress, Social Support, and Food Product Attitudes", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 960-961.


Claartje L. ter Hoeven, University of Twente, The Netherlands
Marieke L. Fransen, University of Twente, The Netherlands


NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35 | 2008

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