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Theses Doctoral

Rating Hunger and Satiation: Comparing Dieting and Non-Dieting Women

Braverman, Sharon

The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that Dieters would have less variation between their pre and post prandial ratings than Non-dieters. We compared 159 female college students’ hunger and satiety ratings before and after their consumption of a 420 calorie portion of Entemann’s Butter French Crumb Cake and a 9oz cup of water. Dieter status was assigned by questionnaire responses to Lowes’ Diet and Weight History Questionnaire (Lowe, Kissileff, 2005) yielding 96 Dieters and 63 Non-dieters. Methods: The primary assumption was that of our 159 participants, the 96 Dieters, because of their lack of familiarity in using hunger and satiation as a behavioral strategy to initiate or stop eating, would demonstrate less of a difference between their fasted and fed ratings than the 63 Non-dieters. We studied whether the participants’ BMI was a factor associated with their hunger and satiety ratings and whether their ‘restraint’ level was correlated with their status as a Dieter or Non-dieter and BMI by group and the number of times participants lost weight [a component of the Early Family Eating Behavior construct. Analyses by diet group status, Restraint level and BMI were performed for the difference in hunger to fullness ratings, Race, SES, Early Family Eating Behavior and for Taste, both Prop {bitter taste} sweet taste and the sweetness of coke. Two constructs, one focused on hunger utilization and one focused on Compensation assessed the 159 participants’ implementation of these concepts. Results: Contrary to expectation, all 159 female college participants rated their fed scores higher than their fasted scores on the Visual Analogue Scale [VAS] question that asked “How Physically Full Do You Feel”. This yielded a significant result with a t of -12.0558 and a p-value of 0.000. We found that there were no significant hunger and fullness rating differences between the Dieters and Non-dieters in this study. BMI varied by group [t of 5.2467 and a p of 0.000] with a [mean of 26.72343 ± .605001] for the 96 dieters compared with a [mean BMI of 22.8090 ±.437262] for the 63 Non-dieters and this was a significant finding. The Dieters’ Restraint scores were higher [mean of 11.14583 ±- .4125177] than the Non-dieters Restraint scores [mean of 6.047619 ± .5016249] and this was a significant finding [t of 7.8499 and a p-value of 0.000]. This finding illustrated the Dieters’ engagement in ‘Restrained Diet Behavior’ and was statistically significant. There were significant differences between the Dieters and Non-dieters in their Early Family Eating Behavior Construct scores (with a mean of 3.052083 ± 1.45363 for the Dieters) and for the Non-dieters, a mean of (1.555556 ± .9466031) and a [t of 7.8619 and a p-value of 0.0000] for the differences between the two groups. A Multiple Regression with Compensation as the dependent variable and Restraint, BMI and group as the independent variables was a significant finding for the use of compensation behaviors as measured by the compensation construct and differential use by the two groups [t of -1.97 and p-value of 0.000]. A Multiple Regression with BMI scores as the dependent variable and group, Restraint, Hunger for the Next meal, Sweet taste ratings, Compensator scores, Early family Eating Behaviors, Diet to Avoid Gaining Weight and ‘I wish I weighed less’ as the independent variables showed significance for the EFEB construct [t of 6.18 p-value of 0.00] and ‘I wish I weighed less’ [t of 3.44 and p-value of 0.0001]. BMI was significantly associated with our participants’ class in college [f of 25.03 and p-value of 0.000] their current Age [f of 14.94 and p-value of 0.0002] and BMI was significant for the number of times our participants lost weight, a dichotomous component on the Early Family Eating Behavior Construct where a score of three weight loss attempts or more scored a 1 and two or fewer weight loss attempts was scored a 0 [f of 16.93 and a p-value of 0.0001]. Implications: It was an important finding that a healthy BMI was achieved and maintained by 101 of the 159 {50 were Dieters and 51 were Non-dieters} students in our study. We also found that eating behavior on the college campus today included a focus on ‘watching what they ate in order not to gain weight’ (Nichter, Ritenbaugh, Nichter, Vuckovic, Aicken, 1995) as well as dieting and non-dieting behaviors. Dieting, historically, was believed to be equivalent to Restrained Eating by Polivy and Herman (Herman, Polivy, 1975; Lowe, Foster, Kerzhnerman, Swain, Wadden, 2001 p254)) but there is now debate as to whether Dieting and Restrained Dieting do not reflect the same eating behaviors in those Non-obese, with BMI’s below 30 (Lowe, Doshi, Katteran, Feig, 2013, p1). It is a positive outcome, we believe, that the 63 {Non-dieters} do not to ‘diet’ for weight loss, but our results also indicate that an educational intervention teaching the utilization of hunger and satiety sensations to those ‘chronically dieting’ (46) students with BMI’s outside the normal range is still necessary on the University campus.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Sociomedical Sciences
Thesis Advisors
Fullilove, Robert E.
Aidala, Angela A.
Dr.P.H., Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
Published Here
March 30, 2016