Key Insights

74% of participants are in the age range of 18-25

The majority of students (47 respondents) reported that they snack mostly at their desks.

46 respondents reported that they reach for Salty Snacks (chips, pretzels, etc.) when they’re stressed.

62 of the survey respondents reported that they experience Academic stress most frequently.

50% of the survey respondents (25 respondents) reported that stress does change their eating habits while many others reported that stress might possibly affect their eating habits.

Through the online Qualtrics survey, we wanted to gather answers to the following research questions:

  • How does stress change students’ eating habits?

  • In which settings do students stress-eat the most?

  • How do students relieve stress?

Reasons Surveys were used:

  1. Surveys would provide us with clear, quantitative data about students’ daily snacking habits and coping strategies, allowing us to identify trends and patterns clearly. 
  2. Due to the relative ease of distributing and analyzing surveys as compared to interviews, we would be able to collect data from a larger number of target users, giving us a set of data that is reliable.


Diary Studies.

Our research questions for the diary study were:

  • Are participants snacking due to stress?

  • Which interventions are most effective in reducing stress eating?


Though we were able to gather a lot of data from our survey, we wanted to delve deeper into the daily habits, stressors, and stress relief methods of our target users. That is why we chose to use a 7-day diary study to gain the most in-depth contextual data.

Key Insights

We found that for a majority of snacks consumed, the participants somewhat agreed that the snack was consumed due to stress.

Participants reported that speaking to a loved one was very effective on 7 of the cumulative 13 days that this activity was assigned. Another activity that was reported to be highly effective for stress-alleviation was doing some form of physical activity.

Design Requirements.

Functional Requirements

Non-Functional Requirements

Provide the user with activities to do to alleviate their stress before they succumb to the urge to stress-eat

Ease of use

  1. Learnability

  2. Efficiency and Effectiveness

  3. Broad and shallow information hierarchy

Our application will have to include a way for users to talk with a loved one to vent about their stress.

The UI should be engaging and appealing

The user should be able to choose a different activity than the one suggested or create their own.

The application must allow the user to customize the activities that they are given

There should be accurate and quick feedback

There should be variability in the tasks assigned to the user