Could you be a pizza addict?
Do you find yourself craving certain foods a dietitian wouldn’t recommend overindulging in? Science may not have a solution, but it possibly can supply a reason.
A study of 120 undergraduates at the University of Michigan found that addictive eating behaviors are most often associated with processed foods that are higher in fat and known to cause spikes in blood sugar levels. The most addictive foods sound like the menu at a child’s birthday party: pizza, chocolate, chips, cookies, ice cream and french fries.
The researchers found that processing food—versus selling food products in their natural state—was a major factor in determining whether a food was associated with addictive behavior.
“In a similar manner that drugs are processed to increase their addictive potential, this study provides insight that highly processed foods may be intentionally manufactured to be particularly rewarding through the addition of fat and refined carbohydrates, like white flour and sugar,” said Erica Schulte, a psychology doctoral student at the University of Michigan and the study’s lead author.
And in yet another omen for meat lovers, another recent study found that processed meats such as bacon and sausage contain carcinogens that can increase the risk of cancer.
Cheeseburgers ranked No. 7 among the top 10 most addictive foods.
And the bacon used in the University of Michigan study, which was described as unprocessed, ranked No. 18.
Mmmmmmm. Bacon cheeseburger.