Neural Mechanisms in controlling Eating

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  • Created by: Grace
  • Created on: 10-01-13 17:32
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  • Neural and Hormonal mechanisms in eating.
    • Lateral Hypothalamus = controls when you are hungry. Decrease in glucose levels the LH gets activated. This would suggest that damage to the LH would cause an absense of eating.
      • Anand and Brobeck - destroyed part of the LH in rats which cause an absence of eating.
    • Neuropeptide Y  - Neurotransmitter from LH . When injected into rats NPY caused them to immediately start feeding and caused them to become obese.
      • Suggests - obese people = high levels iof NPY
        • Deterministic - makes it seem like you cant to anything about it but you can lose weight - need to look at free will.
    • Ventromedial hypothalamus controls when you are full. Damage to the VMH causes you to overeat leading to a condition called hyperphagia
      • Gold - found that lesions in the VMH alone did not resuly in hyperphagia but when the paraventricular nucleus was also included.
        • Others failed to replicate this but did find the VMH alone stopped from getting full.
          • Consistency = reliability
    • Ghrelin - research shows that stress causes etra production of ghrelin which also boosts appetite = comfort eating.
      • Could block the bodies response to ghrelin to stop comfort eating.
        • Then would not get the benefits it gives for stress - lead to worse problems.
    • All animal studies - problem of generalisability. Potegal - qual diff not quan diff so can generalise with caution.
    • Only bio - reductionist  - need to consider cognitive factors e.g sight and smell of food and expectations to make more holistic. LH and VMH work together to control eating which may be influenced by cognitive factors.


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