Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Food for Thought: Calories Influence Eating Habits

Hey everyone,

Thanksgiving is next week and it typically signifies the start of the holiday season! I can't speak for anyone else but this is also the time I indulge in the over abundance of available food. No shame.

A study done in Yale showed that the caloric value of a food item affects eating behavior independently of how much the food itself is enjoyed! Our brain associates flavors with a caloric value and over time we have a preference for this flavor due to "flavor-nutrient conditioning" versus the actual flavor itself. Test subjects were given flavored beverages deficient in calories. After a set period, unflavored calories were added to the beverages. At the end of the taste test, the researchers observed an increased rating for flavors containing the added calories. 

Additional experiments completed found that the metabolic response to the consumption of glucose controlled responses involved with cues that signal calories. Maybe that is why we "love" food that is "bad" for us, because these items typically are overloaded with calories.

Here is the original post:

Here is the full published research article:

- Charles Quinto