Emotions and Health
Cummings, J. R., Mason, A. E., Puterman, E., & Tomiyama, A. J. (in press). Comfort eating and all-cause mortality in the U.S. Health and Retirement Study. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine.
In one sip: We know that comfort eating relates to unhealthy eating and greater Body Mass Index but it also relates to lower perceptions of stress and less of the stress hormone cortisol. How then might comfort eating predict death? We found that the more an older adult reported comfort eating, the less their odds were of dying! You could cite this as support for some benefits tied to comfort eating.
Tomiyama, A. J., Finch, L. E., & Cummings, J. R. (2015). Did that brownie do its job? Stress, eating, and the biobehavioral effects of comfort food. In R. A. Scott & S. M. Kosslyn (Eds.), Emerging Trends in the Social and Behavioral Sciences, Hoboken, NJ, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. doi:10.1002/9781118900772.etrds0324
In one sip: We review the animal and human research on comfort eating, AKA eating high-fat, high-sugar, and high-calorie foods when feeling negative emotions like sadness, loneliness, or distress. We then offer insight on what we think are important remaining questions to be answered in the science on comfort eating. This article could be (a) used as a hypothesis generating tool for your future studies on comfort eating and (b) cited as support that comfort eating may actually comfort.
Bornovalova, M. A., Cummings, J. R., Hunt, E., Blazei, R., Malone, S., & Iacono, W. G. (2014). Understanding the relative contributions of direct environmental effects and passive genotype-environment correlations in the association between familial risk factors and child disruptive behavior disorders. Psychological Medicine, 44(4), 831–844. doi:10.1017/S0033291713001086
In one sip: Do children behave poorly because of poor parenting or because they inherit a tendency to behave poorly from their parents? We studied adoptive (no shared genes with parents) and biological (shared genes with parents) children. If parents fought and behaved poorly, children equally behaved poorly; AKA divorce and poor parenting directly influenced children. Yet, if parents were antisocial, biological children were disruptive more than adoptive children; AKA antisocial behavior was inherited genetically. You could cite this as support of both direct environmental and passive RGE associations between family risk and child behavior.
Rojas, E.C., Cummings, J.R., Bornovalova, M.A., Hopwood, C.J., Racine, S.E., Keel, P.K., Sisk, C.L., Neale, M., Boker, S., Burt, A.S., Klump, K.L. (2014). A further validation of the Minnesota Borderline Personality Disorder Scale. Personality Disorders: Theory, Research, and Treatment, 5(2), 146–53. doi:10.1037/per0000036
In one sip: We validated a scale to measure Borderline Personality Disorder symptoms (e.g., emotion dysregulation, impulsivity) derived from the Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire. How? We studied twins! Identical twins (who share 100% genes) had more similar responses than fraternal twins (who share 50% genes, which means that genes influenced BPD. Our genetic estimates from this scale matched estimates from another BPD diagnosis. You could use this new scale in your clinic, especially if you already administer the MPQ. You could cite this article to support your use of this measure.
Cummings, J. R., Bornovalova, M. A., Ojanen, T., Hunt, E., MacPherson, L., & Lejuez, C. (2013). Time doesn’t change everything: The longitudinal course of distress tolerance and its relationship with externalizing and internalizing symptoms during early adolescence. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 41(5), 735–48. doi:10.1007/s10802-012-9704-x
In one sip: We examined if the ability to tolerate distress changed within adolescents across four years but found that it did not. We also found that distress tolerance did not predict changes in anxiety or depression symptoms but did predict increases in rule breaking and decreases in inattentive behavior. You could cite this as support that distress tolerance functions as a stable personality trait and predicts changes in externalizing behavior.
health in a social world
Reich, R. R., Cummings, J. R., Greenbaum, P. E., Moltisanti, A. J., & Goldman, M. S. (2015). The temporal “pulse” of drinking: Tracking five years of binge drinking in emerging adults. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 124(3), 635-647. doi:10.1037/abn0000061
In one sip: With the highest resolution (to date), we examined how frequently and intensely young adults binge drank across five years. We identified that "maturing out" of drinking reflects a decrease in the frequency of binge drinking but not the amount drank at the drinking occasion. And one of the largest predictors of what predicted binge drinking was if it was the weekend or a holiday! You could cite this as support of powerful social influences on binge drinking.
HEALTH BEHAVIOR INTERACTIONS
Cummings, J. R. & Tomiyama, A. J. (in press). Bidirectional associations between eating and alcohol use during restricted intake. Current Addiction Reports.
In one sip: If someone tries to quit drinking, will they eat more food? Conversely, if someone diets, will they drink more alcohol? We review the preliminary animal and human research that supports the idea that restricting intake of alcohol or certain foods may inadvertently increase intake of the other. We also discuss critical areas for future research. You could use this article (a) as a hypothesis generating tool for your future studies on eating and alcohol use and (b) as support that eating and alcohol use are complexly intertwined.
Cummings, J. R., Ray, L. A., & Tomiyama, A. J. (2015 published online). Food-alcohol competition: As young girls eat more food, do they drink less alcohol? Journal of Health Psychology, 22(5), 674-683. doi: 10.1177/1359105315611955
In one sip: Common sense might tell you that alcohol and food are two substances that go hand in hand. However, there is a sizable literature suggesting that those with higher Body Mass Indexes drink less alcohol. We decided to focus on the behaviors and found that when adolescent girls ate more food they drank less alcohol compared to peers. Yet, we did not find this for all foods alike, only sweet high-fat and fast foods! You could use this as support that eating and drinking may compete.
*Copies of selected papers are provided as reprints for your academic or educational use only.