The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of emotion regulation on eating behavior. Specifically, we hypothesized that in a research population with normal weight (a) not emotions but emotion regulation strategies had an effect on eating behavior, (b) suppression as emotion regulation strategy is associated with more eating than reappraisal as emotion regulation strategy and that (c) reappraisal as emotion regulation did not affect eating. To test this, we used controlled laboratory settings with experimental designs allowing for an investigation of the causal role of emotion regulation in eating behavior. Emotions were evoked by telling participants they had to give a presentation. Participants were randomly given the instruction to reappraise their emotions, to suppress their emotions or no instructions were given on how to manifest their emotions. The results showed that only the participants in the control group ate significantly more than participants in the suppression group and the reappraisal group. No valid conclusions can be drawn about the results because the emotion induction was not satisfactorily. Future studies that measure the effect of different emotion regulation strategies on eating behavior are necessary to investigate our hypothesis
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