Current Obesity Reports

, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 334–351 | Cite as

Weight Loss and Appetite Control in Women

  • Luzia Jaeger Hintze
  • Salma Mahmoodianfard
  • Coralie Bonaparte Auguste
  • Éric Doucet
Psychological Issues (M Hetherington and V Drapeau, Section Editors)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Psychological Issues


Purpose of Review

The aim of this review is to describe and discuss weight loss-induced variations in appetite in women and factors responsible for these changes.

Recent Findings

Studies have shown postweight loss increases in fasting and postprandial appetite in individuals engaged in weight loss trials, especially in women. Similarly, appetite-related peptides associated to the homeostatic control of feeding, such as leptin, ghrelin and peptide YY, were also found to be altered in way that promotes increased appetite after weight loss interventions. Sustained caloric deficits also drive increases in the frequency and strength of food cravings, food reward and seem to enhance oro-sensory sensations in women who lost weight. The menstrual cycle has also been to shown to influence caloric intake in women, more specifically food cravings. On the other hand, caloric restriction seems to increase cognitive restraint, decrease habitual disinhibition and susceptibility to hunger among women engaged in weight loss trials. Neural analysis corroborates these results, showing increased activation in brain areas involved in food reward and self-control processing.


In conclusion, evidence supports that weight loss increases appetite sensations, and promotes changes in homeostatic and non-homeostatic control of feeding, which collectively seem to upregulate appetite in women.


Weight loss Caloric restriction Appetite Energy intake 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Luzia Jaeger Hintze, Salma Mahmoodianfard, Coralie Bonaparte Auguste, and Éric Doucet declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luzia Jaeger Hintze
    • 1
  • Salma Mahmoodianfard
    • 1
  • Coralie Bonaparte Auguste
    • 1
  • Éric Doucet
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Human KineticsUniversity of OttawaOttawaCanada

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