The New York Times Magazine ran a feature story this weekend by Michael Moss entitled The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food. There is really so much that could be said about this piece (and probably the forthcoming book by Moss), but for now, I'll just leave you with the letter I sent to the editors of the NYT:
Michael Moss’s over-wrought piece on the “Science” of addictive junk food misses some key facts. Around the time the executives of Big Food were in their clandestine meeting, regular folk were voluntarily cutting back. CDC data reveals that the average weight of 40-49 year old women fell 0.2 lbs over the last ten years. In the last four years, the average weight of men in this age range went down 1.7 lbs (women’s weight fell by 3.3 lbs). It seems that the addictions cooked up by nefarious food scientists are waning. Or maybe they weren’t addictive at all. I gave up regular Dr. Pepper in 2002 when my pants began fitting too snugly, and I can’t recall any withdrawal symptoms. If Big Food isn’t in their lab trying to create new tasty treats I want to try again and again, I’m not sure why they exist.