Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stomach hormone ghrelin increases desire for high-calorie foods, study finds

Date:
June 21, 2010
Source:
The Endocrine Society
Summary:
The "hunger" hormone ghrelin, which acts in the brain to stimulate hunger and increase food intake, heightens the appeal of high-calorie foods over low-calorie foods, according to a new study.

The "hunger" hormone ghrelin, which acts in the brain to stimulate hunger and increase food intake, heightens the appeal of high-calorie foods over low-calorie foods, according to a study being presented at The Endocrine Society's 92nd Annual Meeting in San Diego.

"It raises the possibility that drugs that block the action of ghrelin may help reduce cravings for high-calorie foods and so help people lose weight," said lead author Tony Goldstone, MD, PhD, a consultant endocrinologist with the MRC Clinical Sciences Centre at Imperial College London in the U.K.

The results also suggest, according to Goldstone, that an increased release of ghrelin from the stomach into the blood may explain why a person who skips breakfast also finds high-calorie foods more appealing than low-calorie foods.

In the new study, healthy, nonobese adults -- 13 men and 5 women -- viewed pictures of food on three separate mornings: once after skipping breakfast and twice about 90 minutes after eating breakfast. On one of the visits when subjects ate breakfast, they received an injection of salt water (as a control) 40 minutes before viewing the food pictures, and on the other visit with breakfast, they received an injection of ghrelin. Neither the volunteers nor the investigators were aware of which injection was given on which visit.

Pictures of high-calorie foods included chocolate, cake and pizza. Among the low-calorie foods pictured were salads, vegetables and fish. Using a keypad, the subjects rated how appealing they found each food picture.

The appeal of low-calorie foods did not differ significantly between visits. High-calorie foods were of similar appeal to low-calorie foods when subjects ate breakfast and then received a salt-water injection. However, high-calorie foods, especially sweet foods, were of greater appeal when subjects fasted and when they received ghrelin after eating breakfast.

"Ghrelin mimicked fasting in biasing food appeal toward high-calorie foods," Goldstone said. "Changes in which foods we prefer to eat when missing meals may be explained by changes in the levels of ghrelin in our blood to help regulate our overall calorie intake."

Goldstone's group obtained functional magnetic resonance images -- MRIs -- of brain activity while subjects rated how much the food pictures appealed to them. After analyzing these images, the researchers expect to identify the brain "reward" systems through which ghrelin affects food preferences.

The U.K. Medical Research Council helped fund this study, as did the Wellcome Trust, European Union NuSISCO (Nutrient Sensing in Satiety Control and Obesity), U.K. National Institute for Health Research and Imperial College Healthcare Charity.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Endocrine Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Endocrine Society. "Stomach hormone ghrelin increases desire for high-calorie foods, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 June 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100621091201.htm>.
The Endocrine Society. (2010, June 21). Stomach hormone ghrelin increases desire for high-calorie foods, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100621091201.htm
The Endocrine Society. "Stomach hormone ghrelin increases desire for high-calorie foods, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100621091201.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Calling the Ebola outbreak in West Africa a potential threat to global security, President Barack Obama is ordering 3,000 U.S. military personnel to the stricken region amid worries that the outbreak is spiraling out of control. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Nearly $1.0 billion dollars is needed to fight the Ebola outbreak raging in west Africa, the United Nations say, warning that 20,000 could be infected by year end. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: Ebola Outbreak Threat to Global Security

Obama: Ebola Outbreak Threat to Global Security

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is ordering U.S. military personnel to West Africa to deal with the Ebola outbreak, which is he calls a potential threat to global security. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins