Eating behavior in humans, characterized by cumulative food intake curves--a review

M.S. Westerterp-Plantenga*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Cumulative food intake curves have been obtained by monitoring eating from a plate, placed on a scale built into a table, and connected to a digital computer. They describe and integrate parameters of consumption of an ad Lib single course meal, i.e, meal size, meal duration, eating rate, change in eating rate, bite size and bite frequency. It is concluded that they are an adequate tool for analyzing dietary and clinical interventions on meal size, because the cumulative food intake curve parameters: are stable and consistent within subjects; show a clear relationship with the subject characteristics dietary restraint and obesity; show a clear relationship with the physiological parameters satiation, diet-induced thermogenesis and body-temperature near the liver, and with the cognitive parameter: estimating forthcoming ingestion: are sensitive to instructions, clinical and dietary interventions (preloads, palatability, energy density, macronutrient composition), and to a state of negative energy balance. Because of possible compensatory post-prandial effects, it is suggested that assessment of meal size should be part of a 24 h appetite profile and food intake observation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-248
Number of pages10
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2000


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