A Lotus Grows in Brooklyn

How the Food Makers Captured Our Brains
June 23, 2009, 9:44 am
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , ,


There’s an intriguing book out, “The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite,” written up in the Times today, that exposes how food companies and chain restaurants (like Chili’s) have learned to manipulate humans’ hardwired cravings for fat, sugar, and salt.  

“Food makers have essentially tapped into the brain’s reward system, creating a feedback loop that stimulates our desire to eat and leaves us wanting more and more even when we’re full.”

chilislogo_q3auIt’s interesting to consider the science behind mass-produced food, and the more I read information like this the more I feel committed to eating simply, naturally, and low on the food chain.

And in fact, according to this book, by changing your eating habits, you can actually transform how your mind perceives food.

“Just as many of us now find cigarettes repulsive, Dr. Kessler argues that we can also undergo similar ‘perceptual shifts’ about large portion sizes and processed foods. For instance, he notes that when people who once loved to eat steak become vegetarians, they typically begin to view animal protein as disgusting.”



1 Comment so far
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That strikes me a bit as getting the cart before the horse. After all, most people who become vegetarian do so because they already, on some level, dislike eating meat. It seems like very few are first motivated by the environmentalist arguments.

Comment by Matt

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