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Title: Individual differences in eating behaviour and physiology : predictions from the Three Factor Eating Questionnaire
Author: Chambers, Lucy
ISNI:       0000 0004 2676 5618
Awarding Body: University of Sussex
Current Institution: University of Sussex
Date of Award: 2008
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A substantial percentage of the UK population are overweight or obese, and research indicates that behaviours associated with energy intake rather than expenditure account for this weight gain. Aberrant eating behaviours have been associated with disturbances in peripheral signals of hunger and satiety, but it is not yet clear if these mechanisms underlie individual differences in appetite control. Thus, the objective of this thesis was to identify healthy weight adults who were likely to overeat (scoring high on the TFEQ-disinhibition scale) or eat less than desired (scoring high on the TFEQ-restraint scale), and to examine the eating behaviours and peripheral appetite signals associated with these eating styles. Experiments 1 and 2 confirmed that TFEQ-disinhibition predicts overeating and indicated that this overeating was dependent on physiological context. Furthermore, these studies suggested that TFEQ-restraint was a weak predictor of energy intake, and had no impact on the overeating associated with TFEQ-disinhibition. Consequently, Experiments 3 and 4 examined whether the TFEQ-disinhibition and TFEQ-restraint eating styles were associated with disturbances in leptin, ghrelin and PYY3-36, peripheral peptides that influence the experience of appetite. Together, these Experiments indicated that TFEQ-restraint predicts low fasting levels of PYY3-36 and that TFEQ-disinhibition predicts low post-meal leptin levels, suggesting that both these eating styles are related to weak signals of satiety. Furthermore, the interaction of TFEQ-restraint and TFEQ-disinhibition predicted post-meal ghrelin levels, with individuals scoring low on both the TFEQ-restraint and TFEQ-disinhibition scales having low post-meal levels of ghrelin, which is associated with weak hunger signals. Experiment 5 was designed to determine the real-world eating styles associated with TFEQ-restraint and TFEQ-disinhibition. This food diary study provided some evidence that TFEQ-restraint and TFEQ-disinhibition predicted patterns of energy intake, implying that the physiological findings from Experiment 3 and 4 reflected differences in habitual eating patterns. Alternately, it is equally as likely that the physiology associated with the TFEQ determined the inter-individual differences in eating styles. Further work is required to validate these interpretations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available