My McDonald’s Habit Isn’t My Fault & It’s Better Than Being a Pothead

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McDonald's I love a variety of healthy ethnic cuisines, shop primarily for organic, whole foods, and spend countless hours reading about the latest gourmet cuisines and techniques. But if no one was looking, and there was a McDonald's cheeseburger sitting next to some foie gras or fancy free-range chicken dish, I'd totally snatch the cheeseburger.

I love fast food. I hate to admit it, but I do. I don't eat it very often, but sometimes, I just must have it. Turns out, it's not my fault either -- my ancestors are to blame.

Recent research found that due to the Ice Age, people with European ancestors are more genetically predisposed to crave fatty foods than those in the East. They needed it bad back then, which makes us feel like we need it now. Scientists found a piece of DNA in our brains that makes us want the fries instead of the frisee salad. I'm quite certain I have this DNA. 

Another recent study found that some people who eat fatty foods get the same kind of high as someone who smokes marijuana. Your pot, my potato chips? It seems that eating fat can induce virtually uncontrollable 'munchies' just like smoking marijuana often does. At least one's driving isn't impaired after a dozen donuts.

In a study with rats, they found that for some, as soon as fat hits the tongue, more hunger is triggered. That pretty much explains why even though I'm not a big eater typically, sometimes after I finish up an Extra Value Meal, I feel like could totally eat another one. (For the record, I've never actually eaten more than one ... unless you include parts of my kids' leftover Happy Meals.)

While all this seems pretty depressing and like I should just give into my genetically induced cheeseburger cravings because it's a helpless fight, it's actually good news. Scientists say this information may someday help them figure out a way to manipulate and regulate the hunger for fat.

"Imagine being able to block this mechanism so that when you reach for your pint of ice cream, you have one or two spoonfuls and that would be fine," study co-author Daniele Piomelli told HealthDay.

It's hard to imagine, but how wonderful would that be? Let's hope they hurry up and figure it out soon.

Do you crave fatty food? Does eating a little of it make you want to eat more?


Image via Link576/Flickr

bad habits, drugs, eating healthy, general health

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Melis... Melissa042807

I used to, then I quit cold-turkey for health reasons, and now it's not so bad. I can munch on two or three french fries off my husband's plate at a restaurant and be fine, instead of wanting a whole order for myself. And I find that I now prefer leaner foods, like chicken and fish, to things like steak. When I do get a steak, I get just a small one. So that's what quitting fatty foods did for me.The first couple months were tough, but now it's just how I am.


Although fried okra dipped in ranch dressing is still my weakness. :-)

cute_... cute_mama88

I definitely crave fast food a lot and unfortunately, that means my kids eat it sometimes, too. I try to limit it to when they're sleeping, (instant ramen noodles, anyone?) but sometimes it means I'll grab them ice cream from McDonalds drive-through so that I can grab a McDouble.


I've got chronic hypoglycemia, too, so my friends are annoyed at how I can eat fast food and not gain weight but I also have to deal with passing out if I don't eat frequently, so that negates the good parts.

1blue... 1bluemonkey

I give in about every 3 months.  So 4 times a year I'm hitting Mickey Dee's for a giant burger, a large order of fries, and a coke - the real deal, not diet.  Then I'm all about the healthy stuff for about the next three months...

GlowW... GlowWorm889

Hey, fast food is good. Not particularly good for you all the time, but there's nothing wrong with grabbing something every once in awhile. I only really crave it a few times a year, though I eat there more often. I get into the habit of swinging through to grab a soda (diet for me, but only because I don't like regular) at the start of long errand/appointment runs and usually pick up a hamburger or McChicken while I'm at it just so I'm not starving half-way through. It's definitely not every day, though probably more often than recommended by my doctor. :P

LikeA... LikeAVirgin

I think I would rather be addicted to pot than fast food which is nasty imo. And it really doesn't impair your driving either lol



H.I.S. H.I.S.

I agree with LikeAVirgin...fast food is disgusting! It's nothing but fat, on salt, on fat, on sugar x 100. I can't believe there are people who actually eat that stuff everyday.

zooey... zooeysmom

I never crave fatty food and I am greek and norwegian? Hmm.

Robin Hilliker

not that big on it now but when i was pregnant i constantly wanted hot fudge from mcdonals and not the sunday just the fudge and mcnuggets 

mount... mountainmommy37

I craved McD's french fries when I was pregnant, but otherwise I really don't think about it.   luck, or genetics, or just training by body to eat well?? 

momav... momavanessa

We enjoy fast food usually once or twice a month and there is nothing wrong with it. We don't eat at Mcdonalds though. We eat at places like In and Out, Chick- fil-a, and Panera.Mcdonalds bleachs they're chicken. Pot is a drug and I will never touch drugs in my whole life! Also my husband is Greek and Norweign and isn't that crazy for fast food.

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