General Question

AstroChuck's avatar

Why are humans so attracted to unhealthy food?

Asked by AstroChuck (37438points) October 11th, 2008

Most animals know to stay away from food that is hazardous to them. But we seem to love food with high fat and sugar content. Shouldn’t our children naturally crave broccoli and okra? I mean, even children who are brought up with healthy diets often slide into unhealthy eating habits as they get older.

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13 Answers

shadling21's avatar

Unhealthy food isn’t immediately hazardous. Even if unhealthy food is not naturally digestable. We’ve been conditioned to digest foods that shouldn’t naturally be consumed (example: cow’s milk for adults), haven’t we?

The only thing that confuses me about this subject is how do animals know what not to eat? If they eat something that disagrees with me, then they learn not to eat it again. But for poisons… do they just die? Do they learn from other animals? Haven’t some animals built up an immunity to certain things?

Animals choose favourite foods too, right?

augustlan's avatar

Because it’s just so darn attractive!

AstroChuck's avatar

@shadling21— It’s called “evolution”, Animals attracted to the taste of toxic things don’t live to breed like-minded offspring.

flyawayxxballoon's avatar

Well, our brains don’t automatically tell us, “Oh! Too much high frutose corn syrup! This will cause early death!” Instead, we think, “Mmm! This tastes good…huh, has a lot of that high frutose corn stuff…whatever, I just want my Twinkie.” Foods like that are not exactly toxic or poisonous. We try to stay away from eating Windex, but when it comes from things that won’t immediately screw our bodies up, we think, “Who cares? It tastes good…”

Comedian's avatar

Because it has sugar and other addicting ingredients that makes us want more

fireside's avatar

I think it all started here

xxporkxsodaxx's avatar

Because as soon as the frier was invented we immediately fell in love and started to dig our own grave but it takes a long time for a person to dig a grave that big so we hoped we’d work it off.

TheNakedHippie's avatar

Because that’s what we’ve been given to eat over the past few decades. Sixty years ago there was no such thing as preservatives or HFCS or anything like that in any food. Now that it’s there, it’s kind of become the norm.

As far as fatty fast food stuff, I heard it originates from our ancestors. Since they would go for somewhat extended periods of time without eating, they naturally craved sugars, fats and salts to replenish themselves after being depleted. Now though, we’re much less active (as we don’t have to hunt and kill our food) and need less of those things.

AstroChuck's avatar

@Naked- Sixty years ago people were eating crap as well, albeit not as badly as we do today.

TheNakedHippie's avatar

Of course, but it wasn’t until (fairly) recently that foods required preservatives for safety reasons… Although now the restrictions are loosening, as there are plenty of organic foods that don’t have any.

kevbo's avatar

Google “excitotoxins.”

jlm11f's avatar

i love okra! i made some today :)

FiRE_MaN's avatar

because they taste good.

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