Appetite And Feeding Behavior

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Appetite And Feeding Behavior

Appetite And Feeding Behavior


Hunger is one of the most basic human drives. Propelled by intense hunger, people in a starvation situation will eat nearly anything. In our current state of societal abundance, most of us never experience true hunger. As a result, we're often out of sync with our bodies' natural regulation of hunger, appetite, and satiety.

Definitions of appetite, hunger and satiety

These three words signify different things. Appetite isn't exactly hunger, but rather a general appreciation for and interest in eating. Related to appetite are cravings -- strongly felt desires for a particular food. Hunger is a physical sensation characterized by things like headache, shakiness, decreased concentration, and a sensation of empty or growling stomach (aka borborygmus). Satiety is the feeling of fullness and the desire to stop eating(de Castro Bellisle Dalix 2000). Appetite, hunger and satiety are governed by both the mechanical state of the digestive system (in other words, whether there's stuff in there) as well as hormones such as insulin, leptin, ghrelin, and cholecystokin (or CCK).

The body can sense things like whether the stomach is distended or the intestines are stimulated to start shuttling things through the pipes. It also has complex feedback loops for hormones -- when one goes up, another might go down, and a third might respond to the first two to tell the body it's lunchtime.

Satiety can be difficult to pronounce much less understand, yet this term is likely to become part of the baking industry's jargon as more focus is placed on health and wellness. Understanding consumers' eating behavior has always been an important factor for manufacturers of baked products. Meeting consumers' expectations for healthier products that deliver great taste that bakers must develop products that perhaps offer more volume with fewer calories without sacrificing flavor.

While hunger and appetite represent the physiological and psychological need and desire to eat, respectively, satiety describes the opposite end of the hunger/appetite spectrum-representing both the physiological and psychological feeling of fullness. What researchers have discovered is that it isn't only the quantity of food that promotes satiety, but its macronutrient (i.e., protein, carbohydrate, fat) and ingredient composition, such as fiber and whole grains(Blundell Peter 1991). As such, bakers are taking more of an interest in ingredient selection as they strive to satisfy weight conscious consumers' hunger and appetite with smaller portions and reduced calorie offerings.

Regions of the brain involved in the controls of appetite

The appetite center in the arcuate nucleus appears to be composed of at least two classes of neurons: primary neurons that sense metabolite levels and regulating hormones, and secondary neurons that synchronize information from primary neurons and which coordinate bodily functions through vagal signaling(Mela Sacchetti 1991).

ACS establishes a weight and temperature "set-point" and tries to maintain these values even when the food supply varies a great deal. This is a complex system that is based on the oldest of life-programs.When ACS wants you to do something, you feel hungry and are driven to find ...
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