Under the headline "Burgers Are As Addictive As Heroin," the New York Post reports that "a hamburger and fries can be just as addictive as cigarettes and even hard drugs," attributing the discovery to "a surprising new study."
Now wait a minute. If, as public health officials and anti-smoking activists have been telling us for years, nicotine is "more addictive than heroin," and "a hamburger and fries can be just as addictive as cigarettes," doesn't that mean fast food is harder to resist than heroin? There certainly are a lot more burger eaters than heroin users.
In truth, however, even heroin is not as addictive as heroin–that is, not as addictive as it's reputed to be. Since the typical heroin user does not take the drug on a daily basis, what is the comparison between burgers and "hard drugs" supposed to tell us?
"A high-fat diet alters brain biochemistry with effects similar to those [of] powerful opiates such as morphine," explains the lead author of the "surprising new study." Oh. Eating a hamburger and fries alters brain biochemistry. Obviously, anything that does that is cause for concern.
[Thanks to Don Heath for the link.]