A review of studies in animals showed that homeostatic (i.e., eating because of physical need) and hedonic (eating for pleasure in the absence of need) eating motives overlap but are nonetheless separable. Just as compulsive gamblers or drug-dependent individuals are preoccupied with their habit even when they are not engaging in it, some individuals may experience frequent thoughts, feelings and urges about food in the absence of any short-or long-term energy deficit.
The researchers show how delicious food can itself create powerful motives to keep eating it, much like more traditional addictive substances. In environments where such foods are always available, such motives may continue to manifest themselves in food-related thoughts and urges even when we are away from food.
The smell of freshly baked doughnuts can entice someone to stop at a bakery and eat the doughnut or the sight of a dessert can attract a person to eat even when physically full after dinner. Once such habits are firmly established, trying to change them may not be a matter of “just saying no;” rather, such discontinuation may produce withdrawal responses not unlike stopping some drugs of abuse.
. . . that threaten you with death?
Avoiding Sweets May Spell A Longer Life, Study In Worms Suggests
Sounds like time for a new hysteria and some crazy laws.