Prior consumption of a fat meal in healthy adults modulates the brain’s response to fat
Hollowood, Tracey Ann
Taylor, Andrew J.
Spiller, Robin C.
Gowland, Penny A.
Francis, Susan T.
- Publisher: American Society for Nutrition
The Journal of Nutrition
(issn: 0022-3166, vol:
5011 | subjective rating satiety | Nutrient Physiology, Metabolism, and Nutrient-Nutrient Interactions | habituation | CBF | oral fat | CCK | BOLD | insula | fMRI
Background: The consumption of fat is regulated by reward and homeostatic pathways, but no studies to our knowledge have examined the role of high-fat meal (HFM) intake on subsequent brain activation to oral stimuli. Objective: We evaluated how prior consumption of an HFM or water load (WL) modulates reward, homeostatic, and taste brain responses to the subsequent delivery of oral fat. Methods: A randomized 2-way crossover design spaced 1 wk apart was used to compare the prior consumption of a 250-mL HFM (520 kcal) [rapeseed oil (440 kcal), emulsifier, sucrose, flavor cocktail] or noncaloric WL on brain activation to the delivery of repeated trials of a flavored no-fat control stimulus (CS) or flavored fat stimulus (FS) in 17 healthy adults (11 men) aged 25 ± 2 y and with a body mass index (in kg/m2) of 22.4 ± 0.8. We tested differences in brain activation to the CS and FS and baseline cerebral blood flow (CBF) after the HFM and WL. We also tested correlations between an individual’s plasma cholecystokinin (CCK) concentration after the HFM and blood oxygenation level–dependent (BOLD) activation of brain regions. Results: Compared to the WL, consuming the HFM led to decreased anterior insula taste activation in response to both the CS (36.3%; P < 0.05) and FS (26.5%; P < 0.05). The HFM caused reduced amygdala activation (25.1%; P < 0.01) in response to the FS compared to the CS (fat-related satiety). Baseline CBF significantly reduced in taste (insula: 5.7%; P < 0.01), homeostatic (hypothalamus: 9.2%, P < 0.01; thalamus: 5.1%, P < 0.05), and reward areas (striatum: 9.2%; P < 0.01) after the HFM. An individual’s plasma CCK concentration correlated negatively with brain activation in taste and oral somatosensory (ρ = −0.39; P < 0.05) and reward areas (ρ = −0.36; P < 0.05). Conclusions: Our results in healthy adults show that an HFM suppresses BOLD activation in taste and reward areas compared to a WL. This understanding will help inform the reformulation of reduced-fat foods that mimic the brain’s response to high-fat counterparts and guide future interventions to reduce obesity.