An interesting article appeared in last week’s New York Times Magazine, “The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food“. It is no surprise to me that snack food and junk food peddlers are not interested in your health. I have read other accounts of their intense efforts to fuel overeating (of their products, of course). Still some of the marketing techniques could truly be called “evil”, especially the ones aimed at kids.
I was especially struck by the reference to a Lunchables add campaign that plays on the theme of being in control of choices. ”All day, you gotta do what they say . . . But lunchtime is all yours.” They even tried marketing to 3-5 year olds with Lunchables, Jr. Filled with chemical additives, sugar, salt, and fat, Kraft played on the convenience of their Lunchables line to peddle junk food disguised as lunch.
Other take-aways from the article:
- Potato chips are the single most addictive food – the perfect combination of salt, fat, and sugar
- Cheetos are remarkable for their “vanishing caloric density”. They pleasantly dissolve in the mouth, leaving the eater to feel less guilty and satisfied, craving more.
My editorial comment: Don’t let food companies take away your will power. Knowing what they are doing can help. Keep exposure to junk food to a minimum. If you really want something, remember that there is a challenge in front of you, but you are a person with free will. You can eat a little of it and feel proud of how you outsmarted the multimillion dollar efforts to hook you. That means YOU WIN!