As overeating, overweight and obesity remain public health concerns, it is crucial to design satiety-enhancing foods that suppress appetite and lower snack intake. Existing research identifies oro-sensory targets to promote satiation and satiety within the “satiety cascade”, yet it remains unclear as to whether it is ‘chewing’ or ‘oral lubrication’ that might amplify satiation signals. Here we have combined techniques from experimental psychology, food material science and mechanical engineering to measure the role of chewing and lubrication using novel, model foods as preloads on subjective appetite and intake of a salty snack. Three mint flavoured hydrogels were engineered to vary in their texture (fracture stress) and lubrication (inverse of friction coefficient) properties, and a control group received a mint tea. Results showed that snack intake was suppressed by 32% after eating the low chewing/high lubricating preload as compared to the high chewing/low lubricating preload (p<0.05). No other significant effects were found for snack intake. Hunger ratings decreased from t1 to t3 (p<0.05), however differences between conditions were subtle and not significant. Thus, this proof-of-concept study demonstrates that manipulating oral lubrication is a promising new construct to reduce snack intake that merits future research in the oro-sensory satiety domain.
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