By David Grisaffi
A new study published in the journal Nature Neuroscience
says that you may be addicted to food!
They claim that junk food can be every bit as addictive
as hard drugs.
Here is the skinny – The study showed when rats were
permitted unrestricted access to unlimited amounts of
junk foods such as sausage, pound cake, candy and
candy bars and bacon, they didn’t stop eating and
the rats gained weight rapidly.
You would expect that the satiety mechanisms would
kick in and both physical fullness would be reached
and hormonal messages would be sent to signal fullness.
But the rats kept eating and eating the junk food.
The researchers speculated that the rats had become
But here’s the kicker. Even when they were given an
electric shock if they consumed more than a normal
amount – they STILL kept eating!
The control group of rats were fed a healthy diet,
also with unrestricted access to the food in unlimited
amounts, but they did not gain anywhere near as much
The main case made for claiming the junk food eating
rats had become addicted revolved around the effect
that the junk food had on dopamine receptors.
These brain receptors are a part of the body’s reward
system. Rats eating too much junk food suppressed this
system and thus ate much more to satisfy themselves.
The researchers found that if they artificially suppressed
the receptors implicated in addiction to cocaine and
heroin of other rats these rats will begin to eat junk
Here are my thoughts after reading this study.
If you think this is an isolated study or it does not
apply to humans, think again.
There have been many other studies on food addiction
both in animals and humans and the findings have
This trend toward junk food is easy and we tend to
slide towards the easy way out, which is turning to
food to feel better and eating junk food for the
Whether it is an easy lunch at McDonald’s or a thin
crust pizza from the frozen food isle at dinner, the
frequent consumption of these types of processed foods
can become habitual or even addictive, contributing to
obesity and all kinds of health problems.
The simple fact is we CAN become addicted to sweets,
high starch carbohydrates, all kinds of fats, processed
foods and salty foods and this realization, now backed
by research, should be a wake up call!
It can happen easily. You give in one too many times
and next thing you know, wham, you feel like you can’t
Although it’s controversial, some people – even some of
the addiction researchers themselves – believe that food
could be as addictive as heroin. Continue reading Are you a Food Addict?