Thursday, February 21, 2013

Hooked: The Science of Corporate Foods

For many years I have offered this joke about food - "Food is addictive. I started eating at a very young age and I still do it, sometimes three times a day."

Seems the joke is on me.

This weekend, Pulitzer prize winning reporter Michael Moss will share an excerpt from his forthcoming book "Sugar Salt Fat: How The Food Giants Hooked Us" in the NYTimes Magazine. The intense scientific effort to create foods which never satisfy yet create constant cravings is laid bare in the book. This link offers the excerpt now. It is a harrowing account of science turned against us.

A very brief sample of the type of research food corps rely on:

"This contradiction is known as “sensory-specific satiety.” In lay terms, it is the tendency for big, distinct flavors to overwhelm the brain, which responds by depressing your desire to have more. Sensory-specific satiety also became a guiding principle for the processed-food industry. The biggest hits — be they Coca-Cola or Doritos — owe their success to complex formulas that pique the taste buds enough to be alluring but don’t have a distinct, overriding single flavor that tells the brain to stop eating."

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow, thanks for posting this article.

PhantomMinuet said...

Ah, Doritos. They are my crack. I know how bad they are for me, but I get that Flamas monkey on my back, and I just can't resist.