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Help us research physical activity, diet and glucose levels in free-living conditions

We are looking for volunteers to help us learn more about reliably measuring physical activity, diet and glucose levels.

Background information

Find out more about our study.

We are interested to know how many days people need to monitor their physical activity and diet to get a good (reliable) measurement of these things. For example, we want to find out how many days you need to record your food intake to give us a good estimate of your normal diet.

We are also interested to know whether that number of days changes if someone’s eating habit is disturbed, such as if a person has recently not eaten enough. This will help us to tailor monitoring periods in our future studies depending on an individual’s lifestyle, to better inform our results.

The study also aims to explore the relationships between glucose levels, diet and physical activity, and observe whether these change after a period of fasting.

Take part in this research

We are currently recruiting for this study

What's involved in the study

Baseline lab visit 1:

On visit 1, you will visit the laboratory at the University of Bath in a fasted state (i.e., in the morning after waking up) to complete baseline testing lasting approximately 45 minutes. We will ask you to breathe through a tube for 15-30 minutes to see how much energy you use at rest, and complete some basic body measurements such as height, weight, waist and hip circumference, the width at your waist and blood pressure. You will then be asked to complete a brisk walk on the treadmill whilst breathing through the same tube so we can individually calibrate your activity monitor.

On leaving the lab, you will be provided with an activity monitor, a continuous glucose monitor, a food diary, and body weight scales. We will instruct you on how to wear the activity monitor on your chest and ask that you wear this and record your food intake for two 14-day periods. During this time, we will also ask that you weigh yourself first thing in the morning and just before you go to bed, as well as recording your sleep times.

This study also involves a 24-hour period of fasting. You will be given sodium and potassium tablets to consume, and you will be allowed to drink water and non-caloric/non-caffeinated beverages as you wish. As a safety precaution we ask that you do not drive your car if you own one. We are more than happy to cover the cost of public transport on that day. Aside from that, you are free to go about your daily activities as you would on any other day.

After the initial 14 days of recording your food intake and wearing the activity monitor, we will ask you to return the monitor to us and you will be given two weeks off of monitoring.

Lab visits 2 and 3:

The second and third lab visits will take place during your break from monitoring and will mirror the first visit; lasting approximately 45 minutes to complete the same series of body measurements (height, weight, waist and hip circumference, the width at your waist and blood pressure) and breath samples at rest. We will ask you to come to the lab fasted for the morning, before you return to your normal eating patterns for the remaining days of monitoring.

Follow-up lab visit 4:

This final visit will happen after completing the final 14 days of activity and food monitoring, and the same measurements as before will be taken.


To be eligible to participate in this study, you must be aged 18-65 years old.

Exclusion criteria:

  • Any reported condition or behaviour deemed either to pose undue personal risk to the participant or introduce bias
  • Any diagnosed metabolic disease (e.g., type 1 or type 2 diabetes)
  • Any reported use of substances which may pose undue personal risk to the participants or introduce bias into the experiment
  • Lifestyle not conforming to standard sleep-wake cycle (e.g., shift worker)
  • Pregnancy/breast feeding
  • History of eating disorders (e.g., anorexia)
  • Any reported recent (<6 months) change in body mass (± 3%)
  • History of migraines and or headaches

What you'll get for taking part

We are not able to offer direct benefits for taking part. However, you will receive detailed feedback about your glucose levels, physical activity energy expenditure and dietary intake over four weeks.


We will need to use information from you for this research project. When you enrol to the study you will be assigned a unique study code to protect anonymity such that nobody outside of the research team will be able to work out who you are from the reports that we write. We will only use information that we need for the research study. Any identifiable personal data will be kept in a locked cabinet in a locked room, or on a password protected file on the University’s servers, in accordance with the current UK Data Protection regulations. Throughout the study all documents will only contain your unique study code, so that people who do not need to know who you are will not be able to see your name or contact details.1

If you're interested in taking part, we'd love to hear from you

Take part in our research

Get in touch

If you have any questions about this research study, please contact the lead researcher.

1 Ethical approval reference code: EP 22 046