Document Type

Senior Honors Project

Publication Date



Lifestyle choices of college students influence their risk of obesity and/or developing chronic heart disease later in life. Many students gain weight during college due to decreased exercise, overeating, and poor nutritional choices. Exercise may increase food consumption and/or the consumption of unhealthy foods due to compensation. The purpose of the study was to determine if individuals who discussed exercise-related topics would compensate by taking more food after the exercise session than those who discussed entertainment-related topics. Sixteen female college students were randomly assigned to participate in either the exercise-related or entertainment-related conversations while working out, both consisting of power walking at the same absolute intensity for the same duration. To determine if there was a difference in food intake between groups, the calories of the snacks that subjects took after their session were recorded. The subjects who participated in the session that had exercise-related conversations had a significantly higher intake of food than the subjects in the entertainment-related conversation session. In conclusion, individuals may compensate with food more if are talking about exercise-related topics than entertainment related topics while exercising.