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Analysis of the hedonic mechanisms of food preferences according to different contextual situations

Grant number: 23/06077-7
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: June 01, 2024 - May 31, 2026
Field of knowledge:Interdisciplinary Subjects
Principal Investigator:Joana Pereira de Carvalho Ferreira
Grantee:Joana Pereira de Carvalho Ferreira
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Aplicadas (FCA). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Limeira , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers:Claudio Alexandre Gobatto ; Diogo Thimoteo da Cunha ; Fabiana Braga Benatti ; Fúlvia de Barros Manchado Gobatto ; Graham Finlayson ; Nicola Buckland


The current scenario of high prevalence of food-related diseases has led researchers to try to understand the underling mechanisms of food intake in a deeper and more complex way, and the non-homeostatic mechanisms - which are based on reward properties of food - have gained particular interest. The food reward is influenced by sensory, cognitive, and emotional aspects, and seems to be modulated by routine variations, such as the practice of physical exercises. This is an experimental, randomized crossover study. The main objective is to evaluate the association between the psychological components of food reward and controlled contextual and nutritional manipulations through two experimental protocols. The aim of Protocol 1 is to investigate the effects of physical exercise on the food reward psychological components, appetite sensations and food consumption. The aim of Protocol 2 is to investigate the association between personality traits, group and individual meal conditions and psychological components of food reward. For protocol 1, 70 participants will participate in two experimental sessions of physical exercise: exercise in a fasted and fed states. The intensity of the exercise session will be previously standardized by an ergometric test. In the fed condition, participants will receive two meals: breakfast, before the exercise session, and morning snack, after the exercise. In the fasted condition, participants will perform the exercise after an overnight fast of 12 hours and the exercise will be followed by a morning snack. In both conditions, reward indicators and food preferences will be measured, as well as subjective sensations of appetite and food consumption. The investigation of food consumption will extend beyond the period of permanence in the laboratory by a 3-days food diary. For protocol 2, food reward will be investigated after two different situations for 60 participants: after an individual test-meal and after a group test meal. In both conditions, reward indicators and food preferences will be measured, as well as subjective sensations of appetite and food consumption. In addition to the food reward, personality dimensions will be evaluated, based on the five-factor personality theory (Big-Five). For this protocol participants with an indicative of hedonic eating, evaluated by the The Eating Motivation Survey. The food reward in both protocols will be evaluated using the Leeds Food Preference Questionnaire - BR and intra and between groups differences will be evaluated by the two-way ANOVA test, in which the control scales will be used as covariates. The tests will be performed at LAFAE (Laboratório de Fisiologia Aplicada ao Esporte), LabMAS (Laboratório Multidisciplinar em Alimentos e Saúde) and LabTD (Laboratório de Técnica e Dietética), on the Faculdade de Ciências Aplinadas, from Universidade Estadual de Campinas - UNICAMP. The results will be analyzed in the light of the literature, in order to understand how food choices are influenced by different conditions in the context of an individual's life, fostering the discussion about effective health interventions, which consider the subject inserted in its environmental context and favoring health promotion. (AU)

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