Press Release

Consumer Group Asks if The Onion Funded the Study that Compares Food to Crack Cocaine

Washington – Today the Center for Consumer Freedom fired back against a new study published in Nature Neuroscience that concluded people who over-consume foods high in calories can experience addiction-like responses similar to those of heroin or cocaine users.

J. Justin Wilson, Senior Research Analyst at the Center for Consumer Freedom, made the following statement in response to this new study:

Americans already have a name for the concept of wanting food. It’s called "hunger." In the case of foods people enjoy, like sweets or donuts, they say the food "tastes good." It doesn't take a PhD in nutrition to understand that we're "addicted" to food – if we weren't, we'd all starve to death. 

Lumping food in the same category as crack and heroin is simplistic to a fault. It gives dieters an unrealistic excuse that will only lead to failure. Labeling overeating an "addiction" removes personal responsibility from the equation. The only way we're going to lose weight as a nation is by taking responsibility for our own consumption. Treating obesity the same as a drug addiction gets us further from fixing the problem.

Under the rubric of addictive food, eating a bag of potato chips in a single sitting is no longer a lapse in self-control, but rather just a "symptom" of an addiction. 

Founded in 1996, the Center for Consumer Freedom is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization devoted to promoting personal responsibility and protecting consumer choices. For more information, visit


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