If you don’t know what “bliss point,” “sensory-specific satiety,” “mouth feel,” “perfect break point,” and “vanishing caloric density” are then you should probably read the new book entitled “Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us” or at least read an excerpt in the intriguing article by the author, Michael Moss, in this week’s New York Times.
These are all terms widely used in the food industry to describe how food is scientifically constructed to bring the “greatest eating pleasure” (in other words, the strongest craving). Mr. Moss’s interviews with food industry insiders tell a story that appalls as much as the food addicts. Yes, the food industry spends billions of dollars developing food that addicts you, designing psychologically-appealing products, and creating advertising that catches your attention—all in the ongoing campaign to keep you coming back for more. That “coming back for more” has resulted in the alarming rates of obesity and the associated health problems such as diabetes and hypertension. Basically, if you are eating processed food you should take note and beware. This is not “real food” but a “food like substance” (as Michael Pollan would say,) and it is designed to set up cravings in your body. The limbic brain loves sugar, fat, and salt and the food industry knows it. It isn’t your fault you crave their carefully constructed food. It’s just the way we are designed.
In my estimation there are two solutions to this problem. Continue reading