Influence of brisk walking on appetite, energy intake, and plasma acylated ghrelin

James A. King, Lucy K. Wasse, David R. Broom, David J. Stensel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This study examined the effect of an acute bout of brisk walking on appetite, energy intake, and the appetite-stimulating hormone-acylated ghrelin. Methods: Fourteen healthy young males (age 21.9 ± 0.5 yr, body mass index 23.4 ± 0.6 kg•m, V̇O2max 55.9 ± 1.8 mL•kg•min; mean ± SEM) completed two 8-h trials (brisk walking and control) in a randomized counterbalanced fashion. The brisk walking trial commenced with 60 min of subjectively paced brisk walking on a level-motorized treadmill after which participants rested for 7 h. Participants rested for the duration of the control trial. Ad libitum buffet meals were offered twice during main trials (1.5-2 and 5-5.5 h). Appetite (hunger, fullness, satisfaction, and prospective food consumption) was assessed at 30-min intervals throughout. Levels of acylated ghrelin, glucose, insulin, and triacylglycerol were determined from plasma. Results: Sixty minutes of brisk walking (7.0 ± 0.1 km•h) yielded a net (exercise minus resting) energy expenditure of 2008 ± 134 kJ, yet it did not significantly influence appetite, energy/macronutrient intake, or the plasma concentration of acylated ghrelin either during or after exercise (P > 0.05). Participants did not compensate for energy expended during walking, therefore a deficit in energy was induced (1836 kJ, 439 kcal) relative to control. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that, despite inducing a moderate energy deficit, an acute bout of subjectively paced brisk walking does not elicit compensatory responses in acylated ghrelin, appetite, or energy intake. This finding lends support for a role of brisk walking in weight management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)485-492
Number of pages8
JournalMedicine and Science in Sports and Exercise
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Mar
Externally publishedYes


  • Energy balance
  • Exercise
  • Gut hormones
  • Weight control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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