Coronavirus causes increase in panic-buying

Local News

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The pandemic is affecting many people’s social behaviors. One of them – increased impulse buying. Whether it’s going out and buying everything you need for the next three months, or binge eating all-day.

It’s happening all over the world – panic buying, empty shelves, and people stocking up for quarantine. Call it “the herd mentality.”

Dr. Brittany Canady, who is an assistant professor at Marshall University says, “People are very fearful about making the right decision; they feel very fearful about what’s going to happen in the future. If you see everyone buying soup or toilet paper, you’re probably going to say ‘well I should probably do that too.'”

But this could lead to more problems you may not even see coming. Things like obesity, mental health issues, or even binge eating.

Canady adds, “Food is a really basic source of comfort for people. If we go to our origins in human development it’s one the first sources of comfort that we receive as humans, but also we just have positive associations with foods.”

So if you are staying home to quarantine, one of the biggest pieces of advice is to be mindful of how many trips you take to the fridge and to make sure you’re stocking up on the right foods.

Dr. Jeffry Life, the CEO of, recommends, “Focus on fruits and vegetables, and high-quality protein, and do not binge eat and do not eat sugar. Sugar is pro-inflammatory. It really impacts our immune system in a very bad way.”

Life adds he hopes this pandemic is a wake-up call to the state of West Virginia.

He says, “my hope is that after this is over, people start taking a new perspective on their health and well being.”

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