Is there really food addiction? Scientists say the evidence is insufficient.

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 Is there really food addiction? Scientists say the evidence is insufficient.


Produce | Netease Science and Technology Know or Not column group (public number: tech_163)

Everyone of us has had the experience that when we eat hot pot, barbecue or seafood cafe, we cant resist eating delicious foods that exceed our bodys endurance limit. If you are a big fan of sweets and desserts, or you like fried foods, you may have a strong urge to eat extra taboo foods.

You may even find that just after eating, you begin to imagine the next time you indulge your mouth and belly, feeling as if you cant control your craving for food at all.

Are you a food addict if you know that your food is high in calories (and usually quite delicious) and that nutrient problems can lead to weight gain and health damage, but you still eat Hyacinth? If you overeat for comfort and happiness, even for a short time, are you a food addict? It all depends on who you ask.

Some scientists claim that eating too much junk food or fast food actually alters the structure of your brain, causing you to lose your ability to resist these foods, even when you know that they have a negative impact on your body and may increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes and other chronic diseases.

Comparing your dietary behavior with that of people with drug use disorders, you may find similarities: Do you feel deprived of some kind of power when you cant eat certain types of food? Have you ever tried to stay away from certain foods, but when your appetite increases, you will relapse? Do you often eat unhealthy foods, even if you know they may make you sick? If your answer to these questions is yes, you have characteristics similar to those of drug abusers.

Over the years, researchers have shown that high calorie, sweet and fatty foods can lead to changes in brain structure and circuits. Studies have shown that many areas of the brain, including those involved in anticipation and satisfaction from rewards, are similarly altered by drug use and certain high-carbohydrate, high-fat foods, especially complex foods rich in carbohydrates and fats.

Nevertheless, many experts still have doubts about linking any overeating habit, even uncontrollable eating behavior, to the mechanisms that lead to drug addiction (or alcohol addiction). They believe that the strong desire for certain foods may be related to the physiological needs of different people, but this is different from the uncontrollable desire of drug abusers.

These experts also question whether addiction to food cravings has anything to do with any known neurological or biological abnormalities that can lead to drug abuse disorders. On the contrary, they say, this may be a problem of impulsiveness and self-regulation. They acknowledge that food addiction may be similar to substance addiction in some ways, but there is no conclusive or convincing evidence to support the claim that any food has the same effect on the brain as addictive substances.

It can be said that the controversy surrounding the concept of food addiction is largely due to the use of terms similar to drug addiction or alcohol addiction and the definition of addiction. If you cant control your desires, constantly give in to the desire for unhealthy food, and you cant change your eating habits, the word food addiction is a good description of how you feel and may also describe your need for help.

Is food addiction really an eating disorder, a compulsive behavior, or is it actually equivalent to drug addiction? These questions have not been answered satisfactorily by many experts. However, many people often have uncontrollable impulses to eat high-calorie, low-nutrient foods. Although there may not be empirical evidence to support the claims of the Treatment, Rehabilitation and Food Addiction Support Group, it is important to continue to study the similarities and differences between food addiction and substance addiction, and stronger evidence may not yet be available.

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Source: Editor in charge of knowledge: Qiao Junjing_NBJ11279