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Avoid Menu Items That Take You to Your Bliss Point

The "once you pop, you can't stop" Pringles campaign seemed kind of cute, but the catch phrase actually embodied truth in advertising. Former FDA commissioner David A. Kessler says some foods are scientifically engineered with particular combinations of salt, sugar, and fat that ultimately take you to your "bliss point" and keep you reaching for more.

The appetite is manipulated by these flavor combinations and your willpower doesn't stand much of a chance after you've had a taste. The brain's pleasure system is shot into nirvana, and then you crave to relive that moment of pleasure by eating the same junk food. But that doesn't mean you're powerless — knowing what foods trigger your bliss point will enable you to avoid them, and ultimately those cravings should vanish.

In his book, The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite, Kessler identifies some of the most blissful (and offensive) menu items. To see what they are,


Classically comforting dishes like cheese fries, buffalo wings, chicken tenders, spinach dip, and potato skins, are all designed so you want to devour the entire plate. If moderation just isn't an option when you're presented with these foods, skip the order altogether and find a creative swap instead.

For example, satisfy your desire for potato skins by ordering a healthy baked potato instead. Top it with salsa or broccoli and go light on the cheese, butter, and sour cream for a nutritious and delicious substitute. You should notice your cravings subside the more you forgo those tricky foods that entice you to keep eating.


Join The Conversation
wiggle wiggle 8 years
I haven't had potato skins in years, but i can still remember the taste and the bliss. LOL!
Spectra Spectra 8 years
That's pretty interesting. I don't usually order food like that at restaurants, but this does explain why my husband will (and often DOES) eat a whole pizza or an entire plate of mozzarella sticks by himself, but when I offer him something a bit healthier, like mashed potatoes or a bowl of cereal and milk, he eats a more reasonable amount.
CoralAmber CoralAmber 8 years
I try and pull out a portion of chips and then put the bag away each time. I'm not overly fond of a lot of the foods mentioned above.
Asche Asche 8 years
This is interesting and I second kcmonsinki! I can devour french fries (my weakness), but baked potatoes never interest me.
booglass booglass 8 years
Interesting. I like the suggestion for a replacement food.
kcmosinki kcmosinki 8 years
great tips fit, i never really understood why i could wolf down an entire plate of curly fries but put a baked potato in front of me, and i'm full before I finish it, no more fries for this girl
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