When we think times are tough, our survival instincts kick in and we seek out calorie-packed foods that keep us fuller longer. In a recent study, people who were primed with messages about struggle and adversity ate almost 40 percent more than people who weren’t, and they were drawn to higher-calorie foods. Don’t let news of the weak economy weaken your resolve. To stay lean in lean times, eat mindfully, savor flavor and let your belly—not your budget—be your guide.

MORE: Why We Crave Fatty Foods