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Eating, drinking and wellbeing

Smith, Andrew ORCID: 2020. Eating, drinking and wellbeing. Meiselman, H. L., ed. Handbook of Eating and Drinking, Switzerland: Springer Nature, pp. 1-22. (10.1007/978-3-319-75388-1_174-1)

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The aim of the present chapter is to present a conceptual framework for examining associations between eating, drinking, and well-being. The approach is exemplified by considering two topics which have received considerable attention, namely, the effects of consumption of breakfast and ingestion of caffeine. It is argued that other aspects of diet can be considered in a similar way once the volume of research reaches appropriate levels. The first feature of the current approach to well-being is that it is multifactorial. Research on diet and health has confirmed the view that there is more to health than the absence of disease. Being able to function efficiently, both mentally and physically, is an important part of well-being. Similarly, the absence of negative affective states (negative mood, stress, anxiety, and depression) and the presence of positive emotions (positive affect, happiness, and life satisfaction) have long been recognized as key features of well-being. Previous research has investigated the relationship between diet and well-being, with some topics such as the effect of a healthy diet (e.g., consumption of breakfast, fruit and vegetables, and oily fish) or a bad diet (e.g., junk food) being widely studied. Other aspects of eating and drinking require further attention (e.g., eating super-foods such as broccoli; effects of BMI; emotional eating; and consumption of foods which change the gut microbiome – prebiotics and probiotics). There are three major problems with most of the previous research. First, the different dietary topics are often studied in isolation, which clearly misrepresents the real-life situation. Secondly, well-being is influenced by other established predictors (psychosocial factors such as stress, social support, personality and coping styles; health-related behaviors such as exercise; and sleep), and these are rarely controlled for. Thirdly, most of the research involves cross-sectional studies. What is now needed are multivariate, longitudinal studies of eating, drinking, and well-being. Such research will elucidate underlying biological mechanisms and develop practical approaches of preventing and managing negative effects and maximizing positive ones

Item Type: Book Section
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Publisher: Springer Nature
ISBN: 9783319753881
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 26 January 2020
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2022 09:23

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