While it is clear that marked individual variability exists in dietary and exercise-induced weight loss, the adaptive biological and behavioural responses that resist weight loss and drive weight regain remain unclear. As such, there is a need to identify mechanisms that predict successful long-term weight loss and weight loss maintenance. Of particular interest are the responses seen in appetite and food intake during weight loss, with compensatory changes in eating behaviour thought to play an important role in undermining attempts to induce energy deficit and promoting weight relapse Projects related to this theme will examine the physiological and psychological determinants of food intake during dietary and/or exercise-induced weight loss, as a means of:
1. Developing models of energy balance that describe the drivers of appetite and energy intake during weight loss.
2. Identifying physiological, metabolic and behavioral mechanisms that resist weight loss and under-pin weight relapse.
3. Identifying predictors of successful weight loss maintenance.
In particular, the successful candidates will examine how changes in components of body composition and energy expenditure influence food reward, appetite and food intake during weight loss. The project may include acute and chronic manipulation of energy balance via diet and exercise, and the successful candidate will ideally be familiar with the measurement of body composition, energy expenditure and food intake.