If you’ve been channeling your stress from the 2016 election and the news cycle of this year into unhealthy or bad habits, you’re most certainly not alone. It turns out that lots of people who are stressed over the constant news cycle, or the election of President Donald J. Trump, are turning that stress into bad habits, Vice reported.

The American Psychological Association revealed data that showed that 57 percent of Americans saw the political climate as a source of stress, while 49 percent of Americans saw the outcome of the election the same way. More Democrats were stressed over the outcome of the election, but a majority of both Democrats and Republicans saw the future of the country as a source of stress, according to the APA.

Additionally, half of Americans said they're looking for a way to cope with the negative political environment, according to data from an April CareDash survey. Some are turning to habits seen as unhealthy to cope, 41 percent of the people surveyed ages 18 to 44 said they've been drinking, smoking, eating unhealthy foods and arguing more since the election.

A therapist based in Maryland, Steven Stosny, even gave a name to the stress that came from the election and then from the almost constant news cycle of stressful headlines, identifying it first as “election stress disorder,” and then after the election, “headline stress disorder.” Stosny found that his female patients were worse off than their male counterparts, partly because to them, the news feels more like a personal betrayal, he wrote in The Washington Post.

But the constant news cycle and sense of unrest in the county is still causing stress in both men and women, of all ages, and of all parties. While some people do opt for the healthier or more constructive ways to cope with the stress of what seems like a constant news cycle, sometimes it’s quicker, or easier, to just crack a beer or enjoy a whole pizza to yourself.

Stress has been linked to a number of bad habits, including smoking, drinking alcohol, and eating, sometimes to excess. All of these indulgences can be used by people under stress as short-term coping mechanisms, not to mention they can help take your mind off the news for a bit. Long-term stress can increase the cortisol in the body, which can increase appetites, especially those for foods that are high in sugar or fat. Once those foods are consumed they can slow or stop the stress from processing temporarily, creating a sense of comfort, according to Harvard Medical School’s Mental Health Letter.

Drinking has a similar impact, in small doses it’s been shown to reduce the stress response, but it can also induce the stress response. It can trigger the release of hormones that can increase stress, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. But because alcohol is a depressant it can slow down the thought process and help distract from the stressor, in this case, the news cycle. This is part of the appeal, it also brings feelings of excitement and can suppress feelings of fear. Using such coping mechanisms for a long period of time can result in serious health issues though, as can prolonged stress.

wine glass Americans are drinking, eating more to cope with the stress of the news cycle. Photo: Steven Ramirez/Flickr