Oreos more addictive than cocaine, research finds

Rats, oreos, cocaine, research
Connecticut College – rat and Oreos.
Credit: Bob MacDonnell

It may feel shameful to reach for that tenth cookie, but new research has shown that Oreos can be just as habit-forming as drugs like cocaine. Professor Joseph Schroeder of Connecticut College led the study, testing for the impact of snacks in low-income neighborhoods, and explained his alarming discovery.

Metro: In what sense are the cookies more addictive?

Schroeder: We used a simple protocol to measure reward and test their preferences. The rats were given both stimuli and in extended studies their pleasure centers had greater activation from Oreos. They also indicated preference by choosing the environment containing the Oreos. Each pair had four tests and after that they were conditioned.

Were the rats high?

No it was the type of activation that happens all the time from engaging in a pleasurable act, the pleasure that’s important for learning behaviors that promote survival like eating and sex. But drug abuse hijacks that area so it’s a different type of activation.

Do you imagine other sugary snack are also powerfully addictive?

Perhaps – anything that palatable that includes sugar and fat can activate our brains that way. It would need to be treated the same as any other type of drug addiction.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Attorney at heart of alleged insurance fraud took…

A Center City personal injury lawyer took his own life last week, days before D.A. Seth Williams released an indictment putting the lawyer at the heart of an alleged insurance…

National

Hamas, Abbas's PLO announce reconciliation agreement

The Gaza-based Islamist group Hamas and President Mahmoud Abbas's Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) agreed on Wednesday to a unity pact.

National

U.S. soldier convicted of WikiLeaks crimes granted name…

By Carey Gillam(Reuters) - Former U.S. soldier Bradley Manning, who is serving 35 years in prison for turning over classified files to WikiLeaks, can exchange…

Local

Teen enters guilty plea for accidental shooting of…

A teenager who admitted to accidentally shooting his best friend to death entered a guilty plea to charges of involuntary manslaughter today.

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, April 23: 'Suburgatory,' 'Modern…

'Suburgatory' The men of "Suburgatory" go camping and Tessa mentors a social outcast in a Miss Chatswin contest, which brings her, once again, into conflict…

Movies

Latin culture highlighted at Filadelphia film fest

Get ready to have a “Bad Hair” day at the upcoming Filadelphia Latin American Film Festival. We mean that in the best possible way. The…

The Word

The best lines from Oprah's ex-stepmother's Daily Mail…

Oprah’s ex-stepmother, Barbara Winfrey, is out for revenge.

Books

A debut novel about fate, love and moving…

Pia Padukone talks about her debut novel, "Where Earth Meets Water."

NHL

All signs suggest Steve Mason will start in…

Flyers head coach Craig Berube elected to put Steve Mason in net for the final minutes of Game 3.

NHL

Gary Bettman praises Philly prior to NHL draft

Gary Bettman will bring the NHL draft to Philadelphia this summer.

NHL

Flyers can’t solve Rangers shot blockers

The Rangers blocked a remarkable 28 Flyers' shots Tuesday night.

NHL

Flyers need much more from Claude Giroux

The Rangers have successfully shut down Claude Giroux so far, leading the Flyers 2-1 in the best of seven series.

Style

Pippa Middleton's Etsy pick: Golden Thread Jewelry

Get a look at the jewelry Pippa Middleton loves and find out how you can buy it too.

Parenting

What every parent needs to know to get…

Mom and author of "Small Talk," Tracey Blake, shares her five practical tips to help you develop your children's language skills.

Sex

Subway crush: Meet your soulmate on your commute

Read about a couple who has been 40 years after meeting on the train.

Tech

Happy birthday, Game Boy! The handheld console turns…

Nintendo's Game Boy turns 25 this week. To commemorate, we look at some of its better games, like "Tetris" and "The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening."