35% of Women Turn to a Favorite Indulgence When Stressed; 71% Indulge at Least Once a Week
Burlingame, CA – January 29, 2014 – SheByShe™, a new women’s opinion site dedicated to giving women a voice, today announced the results of its “Guilty Pleasures” survey designed to explore how and why women turn to favorite indulgences. The survey found that stress is atop trigger causing women to turn to a favorite indulgence and that the majority of women indulge at least once a week.; The study also found that women prefer guilty pleasures that are affordable, accessible, and convenient, such as junk food.
Overall 35% of women said their favorite indulgence “helps them relax when stressed.” Another 35% said they indulge for “no particular reason at all.” Twenty-eight percent said indulging “helps cheer them up when depressed,” and 25% said their indulgence “helps them escape.”
The survey found that the majority of women, 71%, indulge in their guilty pleasures at least once a week, with 33% enjoying their indulgence daily.
“This study reconfirms that women are juggling hectic schedules that lead to the common need to relieve stress and escape. Many women don’t need a trigger at all. They just want to take a moment to enjoy a special treat during the day,” said Janet Helm, registered dietitian and Nutrition Unplugged blogger.
Nearly one-third of all women prefer some form of junk food as their guilty pleasure, scoring ahead of chocolate, massage, sex and everything else. Overall, according to the survey, 63% of the top guilty pleasures have something to do with food. Junk food, chocolate, food/eating were all ranked ahead of the fourth most cited guilty pleasure, sex.. Only 6% of women cited sex as their top guilty pleasure.
“It’s no secret that people eat for reasons beyond hunger, but feeling guilty or ‘bad’ after eating what you think is ‘bad’ simply makes matters worse,” continued Helm. “Food should be a source of pleasure, not guilt. Women should feel like they have permission to take time out of the day to enjoy a treat. When you totally ban favorite foods, such as chocolate, they gain more power over you. So you’re more likely to over eat when you do give in.”
One survey respondent said, “There’s no such thing as a guilty pleasure,” echoing Helm’s position.
“When women learn to disassociate food from guilt, it moves them in the right direction. Food should be enjoyed, not feared. But still, it’s important to find ways to deal with stress and other emotions that don’t lead to overeating,” continued Helm.
Top 10 “Guilty Pleasures” Enjoyed by Women
According to the survey, the Top 10 Guilty Pleasures Enjoyed by Women are as follows:
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The complete SheByShe “Guilty Pleasures” report can be found here. The survey was conducted in January 2014 and represents U.S. women, ages 25-64, with a 95% confidence level, ± 6.55%, 224 total respondents.
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