Have you ever found yourself not being able to stop eating a certain food, until it is finished? Food is so rich in flavor that you can’t help but eat the whole pack. Here is a reason for that and it has nothing to do with your willpower.
Did you know that when you taste sugar, your brain lights up the same way, as if you are taking cocaine? Before you have freaked, let me tell you that, this doesn’t mean sugar has the same effect on your body as cocaine. At least not in short term.
In this blog, we won’t be looking at the detriments of eating processed food. We are all aware of them. Obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, decrease mental clarity, lack of sleep, all being more and more found in kids. However, we will discuss why we are liking them so much. Why are we addicted to treats, snacks, desserts, etc. Why we can’t help, but eat the whole pack and still want more. Let’s find out.
Let’s talk about profit for a bit.
Why do you think processed food is so cheap and affordable? The goal is to be frequently bought, by anyone.
First and foremost, processed food is cheap to be produced. It feels like cheese, but it is not, it feels like chocolate, but it is not, it feels like fruits, but it is not. It is all artificial flavors and colors that can last longer on the shelf. It is cheap to be used and produced than the real ingredients, and taste even better.
It is important to make those foods affordable, so anyone can buy them in order to treat themselves frequently without being hard on their wallet. But the thing is, if people are not addicted to those foods, they won’t be buying them as often.
So how can I make you addicted to my products, without you realizing it?
I make it socially acceptable. I make you addicted to ‘’food’’.
Believe it or not, the majority of the money that is spent on processed food is to research a way to make it more addictive.
The crunch is important, the color, the smell, the texture, the dust that is left on your fingers, the sound it makes while you chew it. These are all important factors that make you excited while eating those products, thus wanting more.
But the most important one that is being researched and achieved is the bliss point.
This is the taste. Bliss point is the right combination of salt, sugar and fat, that makes the food irresistible. The combination that makes your brain happy. Just like if you were to take cocaine.
Now the problem is that it is not just the package food. It is fast food as well. See if you are addicted to snacks you will have it every day, but that is still not a meal, right. You should be addicted to meals as well, so you have them at least 3 times per day. Burgers, fries, pizzas, pasta, etc.
All of them are packed with the right amount of salt sugar and fats. Stuff to make you happy when you eat them. That, ladies and gentlemen, is how you reprogram your taste receptors.
See, taste receptors are like sensors. They pick the flavor of the thing that you eat and therefore your brain reacts to them. If you always eat sweets and never fruits, your receptors will be set to a higher range of sweetness. That will teach your brain to avoid fruits, as they taste not sweet enough. Same with potatoes. Baked or mashed potatoes are not the same as McDonald's French fries. They are salty and melt in your mouth. You rather have them, than the blind taste of real potatoes. You teach your brain to like the fake thing versus the real one.
The last thing I want to touch on is social acceptance.
If you see someone smoking inside McDonald's for instance, or taking drugs on the street in front of your kids, you will be mad at them, right? Everyone will. Socially, it is not acceptable to take drugs in public places in front of kids. But, for some reason, it is socially acceptable to watch kids stuff their mouths with foods that make them equally addicted.
I grew up in Bulgaria and there, culturally it is considered offensive if I go to someone’s house and they don’t give me some treats. Cookies, candies, crisps, just something that tastes good. They never offered me cocaine, right? It is not correct. Then why do they offer me equally addictive stuff?
The point I am trying to make is that we are not even aware of the fact that companies are making millions by making us addicted to something that we do not need. They are flooding the market with legal addictive drugs that are damaging our bodies and are decreasing the quality of our lives. No one wants to see their kid smoking cigarettes, so there are lows stating that kids cannot buy cigarettes. But for some reason, it seems to be OK for kids to be diabetic by the age of 5.
It is understandable to produce highly addictive legal products and make money from them. But it is 100% not acceptable to gamble with people’s health.
I will ask you this:
Is it alright to feed ourselves and our kids with artificial products? Isn’t it hard to watch people suffer from the ‘’food’’ they eat? Isn’t it sad to see kids associating the taste of strawberry, not with the real fruit, but with the colorful and sugary candy?