Pump Priming Award 2022
As part of its management of the Drummond Memorial Fund, the British Nutrition Foundation is providing one grant in 2022, of £5000, to help a newly-appointed university lecturer or research fellow in human nutrition to undertake the pilot work needed to generate data that can be used as the basis of a more substantial grant application. We are pleased to announce that the recipient of the 2022 British Nutrition Foundation Drummond Pump Priming Award is Dr Aygul Dagbasi, Post-doctoral Researcher at Imperial College London. A summary of Dr Dagbasi's project can be found below and you can also read our press release.
Understanding the impact of food structures on ileal metabolites and gut hormone release
Our gut is more than just an organ which works to digest and absorb food. In response to eating, it releases several hormones which work together to regulate appetite and eating behaviour. The ileum is the final part of the small intestine which is an important player in appetite control. However, since access to the ileum is difficult, the link between food structures, the ileum and appetite regulation is not fully understood. Some studies have used long feeding tubes to deliver nutrients to the ileum of humans. These have shown that the release of nutrients in the ileum causes the secretion of appetite lowering hormones which led to the subjects having reduced appetite and eating less. Therefore, if diets and food products can be designed that deliver more nutrients to the ileum, this could be used as a weight management strategy to combat obesity.
Plant foods have cell wall structures which cannot be digested in the human body. Therefore, these foods can partly escape digestion and reach the ileum. As mentioned above, this can reduce appetite. However, if plant foods go under industrial processing, they may lose this protective structure and may not reduce appetite as much.
Dr Dagbasi previously carried out a study with human volunteers at the clinical research facility at Imperial College London. Subjects were given diets with different food structures and samples were taken in order to understand which nutrients reach the ileum and what impact they may have on appetite-controlling hormones. One of the diets increased appetite lowering hormones compared to the other diets. However, the cause of the rise is unclear. The Pump Priming Award grant will allow Dr Dagbasi to expand her research to answer this question and gain a deeper understanding in the role of food structures and ileum on appetite regulation.
Help us improve
We'd love to hear your thoughts about this page below.
If you have a more general query, please contact us.
Please note that advice provided on our website about nutrition and health is general in nature. We do not provide any personal advice on prevention, treatment and management for patients or their family members.