Have you ever ripped open a pack of Oreos and devoured a row of them in no time? According to a study performed at Connecticut College, a group of rats showed addictive habits towards the popular cookie. They seemed to like the cookies as much as injections of cocaine or morphine.
The experiment involved a maze where one side had rice cakes and the other had Oreos. When rats got to choose where they wanted to go, they picked Oreos (and ate the creamy middle first of course). Duh. For the drug comparison, one side of the maze held saline injections and the other side offered cocaine and morphine injections. The rats chose the latter. When allowed to wander freely, the rats would congregate on the Oreo side for about the same amount of time as they would on the drug side.
“These findings suggest that high fat/sugar foods and drugs of abuse trigger brain addictive processes to the same degree and lend support to the hypothesis that maladaptive eating behaviors contributing to obesity can be compared to drug addiction,” Schroeder’s team writes in a statement describing the study, to be presented at the Society for Neuroscience in San Diego next month.
Keep in mind that correlation doesn’t necessarily equal causation. You can still eat Oreos if you like them, just be mindful of the number of them you eat (which applies whether they are addictive or not).