AHS17 is coming soon!

AHS17 is coming to Seattle, WA on September 7th-9th. I will be presenting a poster on my research on diet quality in rats. And, I have some surprises in store (well, maybe not so surprising to the enlightened members of our community!).

Here’s the title and abstract of my poster, which I will be presenting during the Poster Session scheduled on Friday, September 8 starting at 2:40 (https://ahs17.sched.com/event/AjMv/the-role-of-food-quality-on-food-intake-and-energy-consumption-body-weight-exercise-motivation-and-attention-in-rats?iframe=yes&w=100%&sidebar=yes&bg=no)

Title: The role of food quality on food intake and energy consumption, body weight, exercise, motivation and attention in rats.

Author: Aaron P. Blaisdell

Abstract: I fed rats a healthy control (CON) diet or a refined, purified (REF) diet. Diet affected changes in food intake, energy consumption, body weight, and adiposity during the first 6-weeks. Chronic consumption of the REF diet led to impairments in motivation and attention. There were interesting effects of diet quality on body weight and food consumption in response to discontinuation of behavioral testing. I discuss the effects of switching from a REF to a CON diet on the amount of time spent running when given voluntary access to a running wheel. Finally, I show how switching from a REF to a CON diet for 5 weeks rescued motivational deficits. Together, the results suggest that highly processed diets dysregulate energy homeostasis, and that switching from a REF to a CON diet results in selective recovery of motivation for a food reward, but no effect on exercise or exercise-induced benefits.

Interested in attending and smoozing with the hippest nerds in the Ancestral Health scene? There’s still time to register. to register, please visit http://ancestralhealth.org/conference/#1491414889381-d574f718-5313).

And, there’s an excellent, convenient, and affordable housing option using the UW residence: https://washington.irisregistration.com/Form/3574. I’m staying at the residence myself, so I look forward to seeing you there!

Want to help make AHS17 a huge success? Please share the word on all your favorite social media outlets, tell your friends, family and coworkers, and if you really want to help make a difference, consider printing out and distributing the following poster at your favorite local haunts (cross fit gyms, coffee shops, farmers markets, etc.)! Thanks!




Author: aaronblaisdell

I am interested in animal cognition and behavior. How do animals build and use representations of their world? I use Pavlovian and instrumental conditioning procedures to dissect this question. My work addresses a number of research questions at the interface between associative and cognitive processes. How do rats make causal inferences? What other rational processes do rats use? How do pigeons learn and integrate spatial maps? What are the sources of behavioral variability and what is its role in problem solving? Recently I have begun to study attentional processes in hermit crabs, such as habituation and sensitization. A second interest of mine is in how human ancestry and evolution can inform us about our health and well being. In particular, our modern world is quite different from that of our ancestors, to the detriment of our physiologies and biochemistries.

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