Back Back

Why am I snacking?


Lorraine Pollard, Counselling Psychology PhD student is calling out for volunteers to take part in her current research project about weight management and food cravings.

Have you been trying to lose weight or eat healthily, but get tripped up by food cravings?  You’re not alone.

I’m Lorraine and I love food! It is something I look forward to, when I wake in the mornings and before I have finished my first coffee of the day, I am already thinking about what I am going to eat for the day. Evenings is where I am vulnerable, I would reach for the snacks as if I was on autopilot, no thinking really involved, apart from choosing which snack to eat first. I would settle down, in front of the TV to watch a film or box set.  I had convinced myself that my evening snacks were my treat and a reward, especially after a busy day.

I soon became to notice, that this ‘treating’ myself was increasing in frequency, and before I knew it, I would find an excuse to reach for my evening snacks. However, there is a downside of relying of food to relieve my stress, and that is weight gain.

As a woman, who has a health condition that makes me vulnerable to gain weight and who has an increased risk of diabetes, I knew I must change my ways.  This encouraged me to research how do we change our eating habits?  The traditional methods, of restricting food intake (diets) and increasing physical exercise can help, however I knew, that my need for snacks was more about the relationship I have with them. I’d investigated the world of psychology (or as my partner calls it “psychobabble”) to see if can help to curve my food desires.  

After investing time and a bit of cash on books, I now understand my relationship with my snacking better, and this has given me space to consider how to respond to my food cravings, and I now have alternatives ways to manage stress, and my weight has settled, it is not going up anymore, and I still do love food.

Calling for participants!

My interest in psychology shaped my career and now, I am employed by the NHS, as a trainee counselling psychologist, and currently studying for a professional doctorate course in counselling psychology at the University of Wolverhampton.

My personal experience has inspired my choice of research topic, which is investigating to see if an online course, based on a psychological approach, called Acceptance and Commitment Therapy can help with weight management and food cravings.

How can I get involved?

The free online course is in three sections, and each section will be sent to participants weekly.

Each part takes 30 to 45 mins to complete, and it can be downloaded for you to keep. The course involves completing some questionnaires, and at the end, you will be invited to take part in a feedback interview.

Your involvement will contribute to the findings of the project and will hopefully contribute to further development of weight management programmes.

Participant feedback so far: “It has helped me stop and think about what I am eating and why?”

To find out more about the research project contact

Take part in the project.

For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.

Share this release