On Friday you’re sporting your Aaron Rodgers jersey and crowing about the many splendored glories of the Green Bay Packers. But on Monday, you’re warning coworkers not to even mention yesterday’s loss and drowning your sorrows in fast food and discreet bouts of weeping in the bathroom. Save the salads and quiet pride for the winners, it’s time to pile on the melted cheese until it covers your heart’s wounds and makes them whole again.
Does this sound familiar? Do you reach for the burger and fries after a disappointing weekend of football? Come here. Let’s all hug it out, because we’re not alone, says a very important, totally just-like-my-life study.
Researchers publishing a study in the journal Psychological Science (via WTOP.com) studied what people in 24 cities eat on a typical Monday and then compared it to Mondays after a football game, and found some pretty interesting stuff: In cities where the home team lost, there were a lot more people eating foods with saturated fats, with an increase of 16% on losing Mondays.
Winning cities didn’t need to eat their feelings on winning Mondays, it seems, as saturated fat consumption actually decreased by 9% from a normal Monday.
For cities without an NFL team or those that had a bye week, saturated fat and calorie intake just stayed the same for subjects. There doesn’t appear to be a part of the study that identifies far-flung fans cheering on their favorites miles from home, but anecdotally I can assure you I will murder a ginormous burger after the Packers lose (and refuse to speak to anyone, even to accept condolences).
Americans aren’t the only ones using food as coping mechanism — the researchers also checked in with subjects in France and asked them to write about their favorite soccer teams, and were given snacks afterward. People who bemoaned a loss in their scribblings usually chose candy and soda, while the high-flying fans relaying stories of big wins had a hankering for fruit.
Bottom line: Blame your team’s losing record on your expanding waist line.