Do you eat when you are stressed? Some people overindulge on junk foods when they have a bad day or feel depressed. Others lose control the minute they feel happy and have a hot fudge sundae. About 50% of the population admits to stress eating in general. But surveys show that 82% have eaten in response to a recent stressful situation. Is there a way to avoid such extreme actions? A study by researchers at the University of Chicago and the University of Michigan suggest there are simple techniques that can help people act in their long-term interests rather than indulging in immediate pleasures. Indulgence is often a result of people trying to improve their mood and make themselves feel better. People tend to indulge themselves when they believe their happy feelings might pass unless they do something to prolong the good feeling. Others feel miserable and believe they'll be stuck with the blues unless they do something to improve their mood. The researchers suggest that "If you are feeling happy, focus on reasons why those feelings will last, and if you are feeling unhappy, focus on reasons why those feelings will pass." It is recommended that by simply thinking life is not so bad and things could always be worse might actually help you make your life a little better by helping you make healthy food choices.   Yours in good health, Linda Hlivka Clinical Nutritionist