The participants were provided with cookies, crackers, and carrots in each kitchen and told to help themselves. Among the women who wrote about feeling out of control, those in the messy kitchen consumed twice as many calories from cookies as women in the tidy kitchen implying that a chaotic environment impacts our consumption of sweet foods. The science behind this may be that clutter causes the release of cortisol, a stress hormone. Cortisol is part of the “fight or flight” response in our bodies. When it’s elevated, you are vulnerable to cravings which can lead to excess food intake that contributes to weight gain.