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Addiction to Food Viewed Less Negatively Than Addiction to Alcohol or Tobacco


People view addiction to food in a less negative light than addiction to alcohol or tobacco, according to a study by researchers at Yale University.

The researchers asked more than 1,200 adults about their feelings toward people with various types of addictions. People with an addiction to food were seen as more likeable, easier to relate to, and were viewed with less anger and disgust, compared with people with an alcohol or tobacco addiction.

HealthDay reports people with a food addiction were less likely to be blamed for their problem than people with a tobacco or alcohol addiction. Participants said they were more irritated, angry and disgusted about food addiction if the person was obese, the study found.

The findings appear in the journal Basic and Applied Social Psychology.

2 Responses to this article

  1. Fern Webb / February 11, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    This is an interesting report, but I also would like to see more of the details. As it is, I have questions and doubts as to the validity. I also question the perception about food addiction. How did they determine that there was a food addiction in a subject. How many subjects who had addictions to food would not be overweight? Too many questions left unanswered.

  2. Avatar of K. Kilburn
    K. Kilburn / February 11, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    I’d love to see the criteria and process for this study. Personally, about 40 years ago, I switched from alcohol to food. I was a young adult with an inbred conviction of my own worthlessness. I was also a really “good” drunk–huge capacity, no ill effects, therefore no outside denigration. Switching to food, and putting on ten or twenty pounds, brought all the negative feedback I could ever have wanted. I can’t believe I’m the only one.

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