Professor Nicholas Dale from the University of Warwick, Coventry, has identified that tanycytes – a type of cell in the brain – detect nutrients in food and tell the brain about the food we have eaten. According to the new research, tanycytes in the brain respond to amino acids found in foods via the same receptors that sense the flavour of amino acids (“umami” taste), which are found in the tastebuds.
Two amino acids that react most with tanycytes – and are likely to make you feel fuller – are arginine and lysine. These are found in high concentration in foods such as pork shoulder, beef sirloin steak, chicken, mackerel, plums, avocados, and almonds – so eating those foods will activate the tanycytes and make you feel less hungry quicker.
Nicholas Dale, the Ted Pridgeon professor of neuroscience at the University of Warwick, said: “Amino acid levels in blood and brain following a meal are a very important signal that imparts the sensation of feeling full.”