How Strong Is Your Stress-Eating Drive?


         In order to break the Stress-Eating Cycle permanently, you will need to know three things that are unique to you:
1) how strong is your stress-eating drive?
2) which hormones are out of balance?
3) how best to bring your particular hormonal balance
     back into balance

         The Stress-Eating Quiz that follows is a greatly shortened version of the quiz found in The Stress Eating Cure. This quiz will help you determine the strength of your stress-eating drive but for greater accuracy, the full quiz should be used. Remember: the greater your hormonal imbalance, the greater your stress-eating drive.



For each of the questions, answer "YES" if the question is usually true.
Answer "NO” if it generally is not true.

  1.             There are times when I eat, or continue to eat, when I’m not

 2.              At times, I get a sleepy, almost "drugged" feeling after

 3.              If I am feeling irritable or edgy, a snack often makes me feel

 4.              Once I begin to eat sweets or starches, junk food, or snack
                  foods, or sweets, I have difficult time stopping,

 5.              I have hidden food, hidden evidence of my eating, or eaten in

 6.             At least one of my blood relatives suffers from a) obesity,
                  b) diabetes, c) alcoholism, and/or d) stress-eating.

* a more accurate evauluation see full quiz in The Stress-Eating Cure.


1. Score 1 point for each “Yes” answer. (0 points for “No”).
2. Add up all points, then read WHAT YOUR SCORE INDICATES in the paragraph below.

TOTAL                 (Total Possible Score: 6)


How Strong Is Your Hormone Imbalance?

0 - 1 points

DOUBTFUL IMBALANCE: Free Of Stress-Eating   

2  points

MILD IMBALANCE:   Occasional Stress-Eater  

3 - 4 points

MODERATE IMBALANCE: Recurring Stress-Eater      

5 - 6 points

STRONG IMBALANCE: Frequent Stress-Eater         



Free Of The Stress-Eating (0 - 1 points):  
         A score of 0 or 1 suggests that if, at times, you lose control of your eating and/or have difficulty keeping your weight down, your problems do not appear to be related to a hormonal imbalance that we recognize or an ongoing stress-eating problem. If these problems continue, however, it is important to look elsewhere to determine their cause.

The Occasional Stress-Eater  (2 points):
         Your score indicates that you have a Mild Hormonal Imbalance that, occasionally, drives you into a Stress-Eating Cycle. Some Occasional Stress-Eaters find that they may eat out of habit, when they aren’t really hungry or craving anything in particular. At other times, they may eat in response to stress, anxiety, or to meet the increased demands of activity.
         Occasional Stress-Eaters usually have only mild or moderate weight problems. They may have concerns about gaining weight as they age or become less active.
         The real problem with having a Mild Hormonal Imbalance is that it’s easy to convince yourself that, if you just tried harder, you could get your eating under control.
         Actually, the opposite is true. When stress-eaters with a Mild Imbalance force themselves to try and follow traditional low-calorie or other restrictive eating programs, they can set themselves up for even greater stress-eating challenges.
         Dieting deprivation can push a mildly out-of-balance hormonal system over the edge and kick it up to a Moderate Imbalance. The negative feelings that come with failing at dieting or with gaining even more weight can kick it up a notch once again.
         Countless well-meaning, Occasional Stress-Eaters with only Mild Hormonal Imbalances, have ended up in far worse straights because they simply didn’t know that their problem was physical and, clearly, not a matter of will power.



         Your score indicates that you have a Moderate Hormonal Imbalance that repeatedly propels you into a Stress-Eating Cycle.        
         Recurring Stress-Eaters move in and out of their respective Stress-Eating Cycles. At times, they may convince themselves that uncontrolled eating is normal. At other times, they become greatly concerned over their lack of control, weight, and health.
         Recurring Stress-Eaters can experience persistent hunger or cravings for Comfort Foods (carbohydrate-rich and/or high-fat foods). Impulses to eat these foods may shift from mild to overpowering. The intensity of the hunger and cravings can make consistent, good eating habits, and weight control almost impossible.  Sometimes, Recurring Stress-Eaters may show signs of future weight problems, though clearly this is not always the case.
         Recurring Stress-Eaters may not understand why there are times when they are well able to control their impulses to eat or snack and, other times, when this control simply slips away. Often, they do not realize their ability or inability to control their eating springs from the highs and lows of a fluctuating hormonal imbalance.

Moderate Imbalance?
For you, control comes and goes.

         Spouses, family, and friends of the Recurring Stress-Eater may try to be sympathetic. Their support, however, may not be sincere and enduring. At times, friends and family have witnessed the Recurring Stress-Eater in full control of his/her eating. They may assume, therefore, that control is always an option. Due to the lack of understanding that, for some, stress-eating is a recurring (and not consistent) disorder, Recurring Stress-Eaters are often wrongly judged and misunderstood.



         Your score indicates that you have a Strong Hormonal Imbalance that drives you into a Stress-Eating Cycle and may, at times, prevent you from escaping.
         The majority of stress-eaters are unhappy with their eating and/or their weight. Often, they are at a loss as to how they can help themselves. In addition to frequent weight concerns, they may experience an inability to concentrate, mood swings, anxiety, and/or lack of motivation.
         From past experience, Frequent Stress-Eaters have discovered that even their best efforts to control their eating are undermined by recurring and intense stress-hunger and cravings.

Strong Hormonal Imbalance?
Deprivation diets will spike your
cravings and bring your
metabolism to a grinding halt.

         Any period of “healthy eating” or dieting for weight reduction is doomed to be short-lived and followed by failure. Frequent Stress-Eaters live with feelings of frustration and concern. When they are kept too long from the foods they crave, the hormonal imbalance that drives their stress-hunger, urges them to give in and give up. To make it even harder, high levels of Cortisol can prompt higher levels of Insulin, bringing their ability to lose weight to a standstill.
          The excess of stress hormones that surge through their bodies can interfere with the Frequent Stress-Eater’s abilities to think clearly, creating an experience that some describe as a brain fog (especially after eating). Frequent Stress-Eaters may feel isolated or abandoned. Worse, they are almost certain to blame themselves.
         In the future, as stressful experiences particularly relevant to the Frequent Stress-Eater’s pattern of stress-eating present themselves (as detailed in The Stress-Eating Cure) or as age-related changes worsen their hormonal imbalance, Frequent Stress-Eaters are at increased risk for weight- and health-related problems.


The Stress-Eating Cure Program has been designed for Occasional, Recurring, and Frequent Stress-Eaters with Mild, Moderate, and Strong hormonal imbalances, respectively. If you are a stress-eater if will offer you the means to eliminate your stress-hunger, cravings, and stress-eating, and weight problems, without struggle.



Want some help choosing the right
Heller book for you or for someone you love?

Click or Double Click
here to Order




Return to
The Hellers' Books

Return to
topics on

© Copyright 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011
Drs. Richard and Rachael Heller, content, text, photos, design, and layout.
All rights reserved.
Click on underlined words for link Disclaimer and Trademark Info.