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How much calcium do we need to change our appetite hormones? Help us find out

Does increasing our calcium intake affect our appetite hormones? Take part in our research study to help us get a better understanding of this.

When we eat a meal, our gut releases hormones that can make us feel full. We think that calcium, in collaboration with other food constituents like protein, may be involved in this response.

Previous research has found that when protein and calcium have been fed together they have increased fullness to a greater extent than when protein has been fed alone. Therefore, we would now like to know how much calcium is needed to achieve the greatest level of fullness.


To take part in this research study, you must:

  • be aged between 18 and 65
  • have a body mass index (BMI) between 25kg/m2 and 34.9 kg/m2. This is the weight (kg) divided by height (m) squared.
  • not have any previous or current metabolic disease like diabetes for example
  • not have allergies or intolerance to calcium, milk protein or low calorie sweeteners

The study is recruiting participants until 30 September 2019.

What you'll get

Following the completion of the, you will receive £50 for your time and travel commitment.

You will also receive detailed nutritional feedback on your diet and about certain health markers measured in blood samples.

What's involved in the study

You will be required to commit a total of 16 hours of your time across a few occasions.

You will be expected to visit the lab on four occasions/trial days. You will need to fill out a food diary and refrain from alcohol and physical activity (above your usual routine) for one day prior to a trial day.

On each occasion you will ingest a different test drink (Control, low dose of calcium, medium dose, high dose). Each drink will contain 25g protein, a differing dose of calcium, 500 ml water and low calorie chocolate sweetener.

On a lab day you will need to arrive fasted, having only had water before being fitted with a cannula (a small plastic tube for blood sampling) in the arm for frequent blood samples. Baseline blood samples and visual appetite scales will be completed. You will then ingest the test drink before blood samples at 15, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120 and 180 minutes following the drink. Appetite scales will be filled out hourly.

After 180 minutes, you will be provided with lunch (tomato and cheese pasta) which you will be asked to eat until comfortably full. The whole trial day will last about 4 hours and you will be sat in a bed for the duration, free to watch Netflix, carry out work on your laptop etc.


All data will be kept in a locked cabinet or computerised and accessed only via a password, which will be done in accordance with the Data Protection Act. Throughout the study participants will be identified on all documents with a unique code instead of their name.

This study has received ethical approval.1


If you'd like to sign up for this study or ask questions then you can contact us.

1 This study has been approved by the University of Bath Research Ethics Approval Committee for Health (REACH). REACH code: EP 17/18 250.