Obesity and the neurocognitive basis of food reward and the control of intake

Hisham Ziauddeen, Miguel Alonso-Alonso, James O. Hill, Michael Kelley, Naiman A. Khan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


With the rising prevalence of obesity, hedonic eating has become an important theme in obesity research. Hedonic eating is thought to be that driven by the reward of food consumption and not metabolic need, and this has focused attention on the brain reward system and how its dysregulation may cause overeating and obesity. Here, we begin by examining the brain reward system and the evidence for its dysregulation in human obesity. We then consider the issue of how individuals are able to control their hedonic eating in the present obesogenic environment and compare 2 contrasting perspectives on the control of hedonic eating, specifically, enhanced control of intake via higher cognitive control and loss of control over intake as captured by the food addiction model. We conclude by considering what these perspectives offer in terms of directions for future research and for potential interventions to improve control over food intake at the population and the individual levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)474-486
Number of pages13
JournalAdvances in Nutrition
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2015


  • Cognitive control
  • Eating behavior
  • Food addiction
  • Food intake and appetite regulation
  • Neuroimaging
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


Dive into the research topics of 'Obesity and the neurocognitive basis of food reward and the control of intake'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this