School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences


Dr Chris McLeod MA, MSc, PhD, CPsychol, FHEA

Photo of Dr Chris McLeod

Research Associate (Veggie Brek)

University Teacher in Psychology

Chris is a Chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Chris works as a Research Associate on the Veggie Brek project, a programme of research aiming to increase children’s vegetable consumption. He also lectures and supervises students on modules across all Parts of the BPS-accredited Psychology undergraduate programme. Chris’ research expertise is in the field of eating behaviour where he investigates psychological drivers of episodic eating behaviour and interventions to increase the health span of adults

Chris completed his PhD in 2020 at Loughborough University which explored the impact of food-to-mealtime associations on expected satiety, eating rate and food intake in adult humans. Prior to this, Chris completed an MSc in Sport and Exercise Nutrition in 2017 at Loughborough University where he was awarded the GlaxoSmithKline Award for the highest degree mark on the programme. He also completed an undergraduate Master’s degree in 2012 at the University of St Andrews before running his own business in London between 2014-2016.

Chris’ main research interests are in the field of eating behaviour. Specifically, his research explores psychological drivers of episodic eating behaviour and interventions to increase the health span of adults. He is currently part of CLiMB: The Centre for Lifestyle Medicine and Behaviour at Loughborough University and he chairs the Loughborough University Centre for Research into Eating Disorders and behaviours (LUCRED) research group meetings.

His PhD research focussed on understanding how the association between a food and the mealtime at which it is usually consumed influences perceptions about the fillingness of the food, the portion selected, and the amount of food consumed. Chris’ work was recognised with numerous awards such as the John Guest Phillips Scholarship (2019), best poster presentation at the British Feeding and Drinking Group conference (2019) and the LGBT+ Researchers in STEM conference (2019), best oral presentation at the Loughborough Research conference (2018) and Top 3 in the Loughborough University PhD Overall Impact Award (2019). Chris continues to explore the influence of expected satiety on eating behaviour with research collaborations with academics at the University of Bristol and at Aston University.

Chris also has research interests in other related areas. He is part of a research team in SSEHS exploring the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on wellbeing, eating habits, physical activity, and sleep. He is also interested in the barriers to offering vegetables to children at breakfast, a project (Veggie Brek) he is working on as part of the Centre of Lifestyle and Medicinal Behaviour at Loughborough University. Finally, Chris is undertaking research exploring the interplay between neurological, physiological and psychology mechanisms that can be leveraged to increase protein consumption in older adults to reduce the risk and incidence of sarcopenia.

Chris has delivered guest lectures and seminars at the British Psychological Society’s East Midlands Conference (2019), at the University of Bristol (2019, 2020) and at Aston University (2019). He has also delivered nutrition workshops for the Association of British Insurers at their Nutrition and Hydration week (2020) and for the Everyone Active Sporting Champions Scheme (2018).

Chris has worked with Cambridge International Assessment at Cambridge University to write articles (2020), design and deliver webinars (2021), and provide content for books (2020). So far, this work has covered how secondary educators’ nutrition can influence the student learning experience and how Psychology at school can be taught through the lens of COVID-19 to provide real-world case studies to engage students in the subject.

Chris has also worked with Loughborough University on various projects. For example, he was an eating behaviour consultant on a collaborative project with the English Institute of Sport and Imago to design a research-led beneficial eating environment at the Loughborough University Elite Athlete Centre (2018-19). He was also the lead psychologist on an outreach project which created an online tool for prospective students to discover which areas of university life might suit their skills and preferences, incorporating validated psychometric measures of personality (2020).

Chris has also been heavily involved and recognised for his work promoting welfare and diversity in Higher Education, receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award for services to welfare and diversity at Loughborough Students’ Union in 2020. He is currently the Chair of the LGBT+ Staff Network at the University.

  • McLeod, C. J., James, L. J. & Witcomb, G. L. (2020). Eating rate and food intake are reduced when a food is presented in an ‘unusual’ meal context. Appetite, 154, 104799.
  • McLeod, C. J., James, L. J., Brunstrom, J. M., & Witcomb, G. L. (2020). The influence of expected satiety on portion size selection is reduced when food is presented in an ‘unusual’ meal context. Appetite, 147, 104550.
  • McLeod, C. J., James, L. J. & Witcomb, G. L. (2020). Food-to-mealtime associations influence food selection in a UK-based sample. Arch Nutri Food Sci, 1(1), 15-19.
  • Barutcu, A., Taylor, S. McLeod, C. J., Witcomb, G. L. & James, L. J. (2019). Planned aerobic exercise increases energy intake at the preceding meal. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 130, 297.