A recent study released Wednesday by Connecticut College makes the bold claim that Oreos are as addictive as cocaine — at least, in lab rats.
Connecticut College psychology professor Joseph Schroeder told CBS News that rats who ate the high-fat cookies and rats who were exposed to cocaine or morphine had the same pleasure center of their brain stimulated.
“When we looked in the pleasure center of the brain, we found that the Oreo cookies activated the pleasure center more so than cocaine would activate the same center,” Schroeder said.
The study’s findings are being used to explain how humans just can’t avoid eating high-fat treats, lending credibility to the oft-used saying that “[Insert food here] is so good, it’s like crack.”
A majority of the people polled on CBS News’s website agree that Oreos are addictive.
Other sources disagree with this claim. Science blog ZME Science states that Oreos cannot be classified as being more addictive than cocaine because there haven’t been enough studies done on people with Oreo withdrawals, highlighting the difference between physiological addiction and psychological addiction.
“In the study, they put rats in a maze and showed that they spent the same amount of time on the side where they were awarded with sugary food compared to the side with not-pleasure (that is bland food) compared to the side of the maze where they were awarded with pleasure (via drugs) vs not-pleasure (that is, not drugs). Interesting, but you can’t really go on saying this shows Oreos are like drugs,” the ZME Science article states.
Yahoo! Health’s Prevention blog also claims that other food groups are more addictive than cookies, including chocolate, french fries, candy and ice cream.