Encyclopedia of Food and Agricultural Ethics

Living Edition
| Editors: David M. Kaplan

Food Addiction

  • Peg O’Connor
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6167-4_326-5



This entry examines the question whether foods can be substances to which people become addicted. Is “food addiction” a defensible and plausible concept? Immediately several important questions and concerns arise. The first is the more general question: “What is addiction?” The second is whether certain foods or their “use” fall within accepted models of addiction. Can foods be “used” and have similar deleterious effects as the more paradigmatic drugs of alcohol, cocaine, and nicotine? The third concern involves the sorts of food that can be addictive. Fourth and fifth are the health implications for individuals and the public health implications that food addiction is causing an obesity epidemic. The sixth concern involves individual, social, and corporate responsibility for the causes and consequences of food addiction. The entry ends with a discussion of what food advocates and the food industry might learn from the...


Harm Reduction Tobacco Product Corporate Responsibility Attorney General Tobacco Company 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Philosophy, and Gender, Women and Sexuality StudiesGustavus Adolphus CollegeSt. PeterUSA