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Hands-on research for kinesiology students

Graduate and undergraduate students are studying the relationship between how we eat and hormones that affect appetite and what we eat and hormones that control blood glucose.

Hands-on research for kinesiology students

Kinesiology graduate student Brian Franklin is conducting research on the effect of two types of meals – one high in protein and the other high in monounsaturated fat – on blood glucose control. (Photo by Carolyn Cruz)

Hands-on research for kinesiology students

Graduate and undergraduate students are studying the relationship between how we eat and hormones that affect appetite and what we eat and hormones that control blood glucose.

Meena Shah, professor of kinesiology, and her team of students are working to better understand the relationship between how we eat and hormones that affect appetite and what we eat and hormones that control blood glucose.

Kelli Crisp, a graduate student in kinesiology, is conducting a study on the effect eating speed has on gut hormones that control feelings of hunger and fullness.

In the study, subjects are offered pasta and must consume it either quickly (in 10 minutes or less) or slowly (in 30 minutes). A Blood sample is taken before and several times after the meal to measure changes in ghrelin, a hormone that causes hunger, and peptide YY and glucagon-like peptide 1, hormones that cause fullness.

“I’m also examining whether you eat more the rest of the day if you eat a meal fast versus if you eat it slow,” Crisp said.

Another kinesiology graduate student, Brian Franklin, is conducting research on the effect of two different types of meals – one high in protein and the other high in monounsaturated fat – on blood glucose control.

Shah says undergraduate students also are engaged in the department’s research efforts along with graduate students.

“It works out very well for both the undergraduate and graduate students,” she said. “The graduate students get the extra help and the undergraduate students get the experience of working on a big project, which is really good for them. They also get to participate in the brainstorming and decision-making process during our research group meetings.”