Food is increasingly used to reduce negative emotional states and to discourage attention from real problems, which does not have a long-term effect. Attachment is a lifelong process and because it plays a fundamental role in emotional development and processing, it can be a great help in understanding emotional eating. The aim of present master's thesis was to investigate the correlation between emotional eating, parental attachment and attachment in relationships. In the theoretical part, the author presented theoretical framework and findings of previous research of emotional eating and attachment. Previous findings and ideas on the correlation between emotional eating and attachment are also demonstrated. The empirical part contains the presentation of the research, which involved 320 participants, 41 men and 279 women. The tools used by the author for this purpose are Parental Attachment Questionnaire (PAQ), Emotional Eating Scale (EES) and Relationship Questionnaire (RQ). The results did not show statistically significant correlation between emotional eating and parental attachment. The correlation between emotional eating and attachment in relationships has been partly demonstrated. The results show that individuals with more secure attachment in relationships are more likely to achieve lower results on the EES scale than individuals with less secure attachment in relationships. The study did not confirm statistically significant differences in emotional eating between women and men, nor between adolescents and adults.
This thesis points to the important role of linking attachment to emotional eating. The author proposes further research into linking attachment and emotional eating, taking into account some of the limitations of this research.