Acute effects of exercise on appetite, ad libitum energy intake and appetite-regulatory hormones in lean and overweight/obese men and women

BACKGROUND: Acute exercise does not elicit compensatory changes in appetite parameters in lean individuals; however, less is known about responses in overweight individuals. This study compared the acute effects of moderate-intensity exercise on appetite, energy intake and appetite-regulatory hormones in lean and overweight/obese individuals. METHODS: Forty-seven healthy lean (n=22, 11 females; mean(s.d.) 37.5(15.2) years; 22.4(1.5) kg·m−2) and overweight/obese (n=25, 11 females; 45.0(12.4) years, 29.2(2.9) kg·m−2) individuals completed two, 8-h trials (exercise and control). In the exercise trial, participants completed 60 min treadmill exercise (59(4)% peak oxygen uptake) at 0–1 h and rested thereafter whilst participants rested throughout the control trial. Appetite ratings and concentrations of acylated ghrelin, peptide YY (PYY) and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) were measured at pre-determined intervals. Standardised meals were consumed at 1.5 and 4 h and an ad libitum buffet meal was provided at 7 h. RESULTS: Exercise suppressed appetite (95% CI −3.1 to −0.5 mm, P=0.01), and elevated delta PYY (95% CI 10 to 17 pg·ml−1, P<0.001) and GLP-1 (95% CI 7 to 10 pmol·l−1, P<0.001) concentrations. Delta acylated ghrelin concentrations (95% CI −4.6 to 3.4 pg·ml−1, P=0.76) and ad libitum energy intake (95% CI −391 to 346 kJ, P=0.90) were similar between trials. Subjective and hormonal appetite parameters and ad libitum energy intake were similar between lean and overweight/obese individuals (Pgreater than or equal to0.27). The exercise-induced elevation in delta GLP-1 was greater in overweight/obese individuals (trial-by-group interaction P=0.01), whereas lean individuals exhibited a greater exercise-induced increase in delta PYY (trial-by-group interaction P<0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Acute moderate-intensity exercise transiently suppressed appetite and increased PYY and GLP-1 in the hours after exercise without stimulating compensatory changes in appetite in lean or overweight/obese individuals. These findings underscore the ability of exercise to induce a short-term energy deficit without any compensatory effects on appetite regardless of weight status.