To Eat or Not to Eat
June 28, 2012
Good afternoon. My name is Christina Holland, you can call me Chris. Today’s
session will explain to you all some physiological factors that cause people to ea or not
eat. We will also discuss some myths about hunger and satiety. Please feel free to ask
questions about anything during and after our discussion.
I would like to begin by covering what a few of the physiological factors are that
can cause people to eat or not eat and then move on to specific eating disorders and some
However, it was shown that people who had their stomachs removed still
experienced feelings of hunger and satiety. Research has shown instead, that the
gastrointestinal tract is the source of feelings of satiety. It was also found that the stomach
and gastrointestinal system released chemicals called peptides which interacted with
hormones and neurotransmitters in the brain; one of the peptides responsible for
increasing appetites is synthesized in the brain in the hypothalamus. (helpguide.org) the
discovery of hunger and satiety peptides has re-established interest in the hypothalamus's
role as well as the role of neurons in hunger and satiety. Research has also shown that
serotonin plays a role in reducing hunger, eating and weight (helpguide.org.).
That was a lot of information to digest! What it basically means is that there are
several factors that affect our feelings of hunger and satiety. Messages are sent via
peptides to the body from areas such as the stomach and gastrointestinal tract to tell us
when we are hungry or full (sharecare.com). So if our bodies let us know when we are
full or hungry how come some of us want to eat more or very little? Let's discuss some
questions about anorexia and overeating and see if we can answer this.
Q: My parents are obese, is that why I overeat?
A: That is a very good question and often people believe that it is simply a genetic factor
which makes them obese. While genetics may play a small role in the chances of being
able to become obese it seems to actually be our environments that shape our eating
habits. For instance if the culture we live in heavily pushes processed, fatty, and
unhealthy foods that promote weight gain and it is acceptable to eat it, then we will have
a higher chance of developing a weight problem. Also our families play a role in our
environments, so often what we eat, the amounts we eat, and how often we eat is learned
from our family environments as well. Some people consume more energy because they
crave more calorie rich foods. It has also been shown that some people have a strong
response to the sight or smell of food which causes them to eat more. In short it is most
likely environment but it may also be linked to genes or differences in our bodies.
Q: My boyfriend and I eat...