Neural correlates of individual differences related to appetite

Michael R. Lowe, Jason van Steenburgh, Christopher Ochner, Maria Coletta

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Using neuroimaging technologies to compare normal weight and obese individuals can reveal much about the pathophysiological state of obesity but such comparisons tell us little about what makes some normal weight individuals susceptible to obesity or about important individual differences amongst obese individuals. The current review therefore reviews neuroimaging research on individual difference measures that can illuminate these important topics. After introducing three neuropsychological models of the nature of motivation to approach rewarding stimuli, neuroimaging research on measures of impulsivity, craving, binge eating, restrained eating and disinhibited eating is reviewed. Although neuroimaging research on individual differences measures of brain activity related to appetite is in its infancy, existing studies suggest that such research could enrich the understanding, prevention and treatment of disordered eating and obesity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)561-571
Number of pages11
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 14 2009


  • Appetite
  • Individual differences
  • Neuroimaging
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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