Monkeying Around, Part 2

May 23, 2008 at 1:08 am Leave a comment

In my recent post, Monkeying Around, I shared a study on the bingeing habits of stressed out, lower-status monkeys. The study also caught the eye – and keyboard – of’s Healthy Living blogger, Weetabix.

Because the stressed, subordinate monkeys were the only ones to overeat the sugary and fatty banana chips, Weetabix asks:

“Is that why being rich and being thin seem to go hand in hand? Is this the underlying physiological mechanism that explains the link between socio-economic status and higher BMIs?”

These are interesting points to consider, but I don’t think so. The rich have greater access to services which help them get and stay thin. Plus, there’s more pressure on them to stay slender because being slim and “attractive” is part of their jobs. So, they make sure they stay that way. Their stress response reveals itself differently, through drug addiction, excessive shopping, and more.

Studies like these and the conversations that result from them are fascinating to me. It’s always fun to engage in a hearty intellectual debate. But, again, the bottom line is that the “why” doesn’t really matter; what matters is that there are potentially some physiological challenges we’re up against when we diet. If we know that from the outset, we can better combat those tendencies so we’re more likely to achieve our goals.


Entry filed under: coping strategies, news around the blogosphere.

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