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HPA axis response to stress predicts short-term snack intake in obese women
Preventive and Behavioral Medicine Publications and Presentations
  • Bradley M. Appelhans, Northwestern University
  • Sherry L. Pagoto, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Erica N. Peters, University of Vermont
  • Bonnie J. Spring, Northwestern University
UMMS Affiliation
Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine
Publication Date
Document Type
Adult; Analysis of Variance; Biological Markers; Eating; Feeding Behavior; Female; Humans; Hunger; Hydrocortisone; Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System; Middle Aged; Obesity; Pilot Projects; Pituitary-Adrenal System; Predictive Value of Tests; Psychiatric Status Rating Scales; Questionnaires; Saliva; Stress, Psychological; Task Performance and Analysis
Prior research has linked heightened cortisol reactivity to stress with increased food consumption. This pilot study tested corollaries of the hypothesis that cortisol stress reactivity promotes obesity. Thirty-four lean and obese women completed an acute stress task and a non-stressful control task in counterbalanced order. Contrary to expectations, higher post-stress cortisol was associated with decreased post-stress snack intake in obese women but was unrelated to snack intake in lean women. Stress also blunted an expected rise in hunger only among obese women. Findings suggest that some obese women may be more sensitive to short-term anorectic effects of HPA axis activation.
DOI of Published Version
Appetite. 2010 Feb;54(1):217-20. Epub 2009 Nov 17. Link to article on publisher's site
Related Resources
Link to Article in PubMed
PubMed ID
Citation Information
Bradley M. Appelhans, Sherry L. Pagoto, Erica N. Peters and Bonnie J. Spring. "HPA axis response to stress predicts short-term snack intake in obese women" Vol. 54 Iss. 1 (2009) ISSN: 0195-6663 (Linking)
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