Is it possible to dissociate ‘liking’ and ‘wanting’ for foods in humans? A novel experimental procedure

Biopsychology Group, Institute of Psychological Sciences, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK.
Physiology & Behavior (Impact Factor: 2.98). 02/2007; 90(1):36-42. DOI: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2006.08.020
Source: PubMed


Berridge's model (e.g. [Berridge KC. Food reward: Brain substrates of wanting and liking. Neurosci Biobehav Rev 1996;20:1-25.; Berridge KC, Robinson T E. Parsing reward. Trends Neurosci 2003;26:507-513.; Berridge KC. Motivation concepts in behavioral neuroscience. Physiol Behav 2004;81:179-209]) outlines the brain substrates thought to mediate food reward with distinct 'liking' (hedonic/affective) and 'wanting' (incentive salience/motivation) components. Understanding the dual aspects of food reward could throw light on food choice, appetite control and overconsumption. The present study reports the development of a procedure to measure these processes in humans. A computer-based paradigm was used to assess 'liking' (through pleasantness ratings) and 'wanting' (through forced-choice photographic procedure) for foods that varied in fat (high or low) and taste (savoury or sweet). 60 participants completed the program when hungry and after an ad libitum meal. Findings indicate a state (hungry-satiated)-dependent, partial dissociation between 'liking' and 'wanting' for generic food categories. In the hungry state, participants 'wanted' high-fat savoury>low-fat savoury with no corresponding difference in 'liking', and 'liked' high-fat sweet>low-fat sweet but did not differ in 'wanting' for these foods. In the satiated state, participants 'liked', but did not 'want', high-fat savoury>low-fat savoury, and 'wanted' but did not 'like' low-fat sweet>high-fat sweet. More differences in 'liking' and 'wanting' were observed when hungry than when satiated. This procedure provides the first step in proof of concept that 'liking' and 'wanting' can be dissociated in humans and can be further developed for foods varying along different dimensions. Other experimental procedures may also be devised to separate 'liking' and 'wanting'.

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    • "Repeat exposure has been shown to lead to increased consumption of snack foods without subsequent increase of liking in the case of obese and non-obese women (Temple et al., 2009). In the study conducted by Finlayson et al. (2007) they attempted to develop a methodology in order to dissociate wanting from liking and they also found that more differences in liking were observed when the participants were hungry than when satiated. These studies, plus the data from the present study, strongly indicate that, since motivation and liking can be dissociated , at least potentially, it is crucial to measure both phenomena. "
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    ABSTRACT: Previous research on the repeat exposure to a novel flavour combined with monosodium glutamate (MSG) has shown an increase in liking and consumption for the particular flavour. The aim of the current work was to investigate whether this could also be observed in the case of older people, since they are most affected by undernutrition in the developed world and ways to increase consumption of food are of significant importance for this particular age group. For this study, 40 older adults (age 65-88) repeatedly consumed potato soup with two novel flavours (lemongrass and cumin) which were either with or without a high level of MSG (5%w/w). A randomized single blind within-subject design was implemented, where each participant was exposed to both soup flavours three times over 6 days, with one of the soup flavours containing MSG. After three repeat exposures, consumption increased significantly for the soups where the flavours had contained MSG during the repeated exposure (mean weight consumed increased from 123 to 164 g, p=0.017), implying that glutamate conditioned for increased wanting and consumption, despite the fact that the liking for the soup had not increased. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Appetite 03/2015; 90. DOI:10.1016/j.appet.2015.03.002 · 2.69 Impact Factor
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    • "On each trial, participants quickly indicated whether they wanted to eat a pictured food at the current moment, with the overall proportion of yes responses being the dependent measure. This task has been shown to reflect impulsive food choices and to be sensitive to individual differences (Custers & Aarts, 2005; Finlayson, King, & Blundell, 2007; Ouwehand & Papies, 2010). We included both healthy and unhealthy foods so that we could assess whether participants' preferences and choices shifted toward healthier options after applying mindful attention. "
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    ABSTRACT: Mindful attention, a central component of mindfulness meditation, can be conceived as becoming aware of one’s thoughts and experiences and being able to observe them as transient mental events. Here, we present a series of studies demonstrating the effects of applying this metacognitive perspective to one’s spontaneous reward responses when encountering attractive stimuli. Taking a grounded cognition perspective, we argue that reward simulations in response to attractive stimuli contribute to appetitive behavior and that motivational states and traits enhance these simulations. Directing mindful attention at these thoughts and seeing them as mere mental events should break this link, such that motivational states and traits no longer affect reward simulations and appetitive behavior. To test this account, we trained participants to observe their thoughts in reaction to appetitive stimuli as mental events, using a brief procedure designed for nonmeditators. Across 3 experiments, we found that adopting the mindful attention perspective reduced the effects of motivational states and traits on appetitive behavior in 2 domains, in both the laboratory and the field. Specifically, after applying mindful attention, participants’ sexual motivation no longer made opposite-sex others seem more attractive and thus desirable as partners. Similarly, participants’ levels of hunger no longer boosted the attractiveness of unhealthy foods, resulting in healthier eating choices. We discuss these results in the context of mechanisms and applications of mindful attention and explore how mindfulness and mindful attention can be conceptualized in psychological research more generally.
    Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 01/2015; 108(1). DOI:10.1037/a0038032 · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    • "The measurement of liking and wanting were assessed using a computer-based paradigm (E-prime v 1.1.4) (Finlayson, et al., 2007), immediately before and after the acute constant-load exercise test. This paradigm uses 20 photographic food stimuli varying along two dimensions, fat (high or low) and taste (sweet or nonsweet). "

    Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 12/2014; 11(Suppl 1):P7-P7. DOI:10.1186/1550-2783-11-S1-P7 · 1.91 Impact Factor
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