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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Personal theories of hunger and eating Assanand, Sunaina


Recent research on hunger and eating has shown (a) that among individuals with ad libitum access to food, hunger and eating are not regulated by deviations in the body's energy resources from energy set-points, and (b) that it is healthier for people to consume their daily caloric intake as several small snacks than as three large meals. People's beliefs about hunger and eating were assessed in two questionnaire studies. In Study 1, a large sample of university undergraduates was surveyed; in Study 2, dietetics students, nursing students, medical students, dietitians, nurses, and doctors were surveyed. Both studies revealed that people's personal theories of hunger and eating were inconsistent with recent research findings in ways that are likely to promote over consumption and ill health. These results suggest that educational programs designed to modify the beliefs about hunger and eating of people suffering from problems of over consumption and of health professionals who treat problems of over consumption may increase the effectiveness of current treatment regimens.

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