Sign up to >>

Do the food choices we make as teens come back to haunt us as adults?

A neuroscientist from the University of Aberdeen Rowett Institute has been awarded almost £550K to study the effect eating ‘junk food’ as a teen might have on individuals throughout adulthood.

Dr Fabien Naneix was awarded a New Investigator grant from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) to carry out the three-year project.

Dr Naneix said: “I want to understand how the overconsumption of sugar or fat during adolescence impacts food choices later in life. As part of that, I want to look at how it impacts choices between balanced or unbalanced foods, sensitivity to food stimuli, and the related brain functioning. We want to show whether there is a correlation between poor adolescent diet and long-term poor diet choices.

“My work will especially focus on a part of the brain called the ‘brain’s reward system’ and its central neurotransmitter (chemicals that allow neurons to communicate with each other); dopamine.

“Dopamine is already known to play a central role in food choice, and we previously showed this circuit does not mature before adulthood, meaning younger brains are more vulnerable. We will use modern neuroscience techniques using mice to target, record and manipulate these specific brain circuits, hoping to pave the way to better understand the effect of the modern lifestyle on feeding behaviours and health.”

Dr Naneix’s project, entitled ‘Adolescent sugar overconsumption programs food choices via altered dopamine signalling,’ will get underway later this year.


News categories


Copyright © 2024 Nutrition2Me. All Rights Reserved |