Oral Presentation ANZOS-ASLM-ICCR 2019

Compulsive-like eating is induced by intermittent access to high-fat high-sugar diet.  (#30)

Diana Sketriene 1 , Puspha Sinnayah 1 2 , Natcharee Kraiwattanapirom 1 3 , Andrew J Lawrence 1 , Robyn M Brown 1
  1. Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, Parkville, VIC, Australia
  2. Victorian University of Technology, Melbourne, Vic, Australia
  3. Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand

Intermittent access schedules model a common form of “yo-yo” dieting, whereby a person abstains from high-fat/high-sugar (HFHS) palatable foods while trying to eat less energy dense, and often less palatable, foods. This cycling pattern of intake resembles the use-abstinence cycle observed in drug addiction and is a risk factor for the development of binge eating disorder and obesity. This study assessed the impact of intermittent access to HFHS on the development of a hallmark behavioural feature of drug addiction – compulsivity. Rats were exposed to HFHS in either an ad libitum (ad lib 24h/d; n=14) or intermittent (3d/w, 1h/d; n=15) manner. A control group was given access to standard chow only (ad lib, 24h/d; n=10). Compulsive-like eating was assessed using a conditioned suppression paradigm. Rats were given the opportunity to eat HFHS food for 30 min per day to establish their baseline intake. This was followed by 4 days of foot shock (0.5mA) paired with a light cue (CS) in the absence of food.  During the test session on the following day the effect of CS exposure alone on palatable food consumption was assessed.  Total food intake and latency to eat were reduced in ad lib (p<0.05) and chow (p<0.05) groups but was unchanged in intermittent group, demonstrating that their consumption was insensitive to aversive environmental cues predicting adversity. These findings suggest that an intermittent schedule of access to HFHS is sufficient to promote compulsive-like eating behaviour thereby contributing to the development of obesity.