Science Says Cheese is Basically Cocaine
You know how it is: You’re bored at some fancypants dinner party, so you meander over to the snack table and think, “Cool, they have cheese,” and then, “Whoa, that cheese is tasty, I should have another few blocks,” and then 10 minutes later you’re smearing cheese all over your nose and jumping over coffee tables while shouting about how you’re the god of thunder? Well FINALLY science has taken a break from proving Earth’s spherical shape to B.o.B to afford us an explanation: Turns out cheese triggers the same excitable brain-parts as some of your favorite hard drugs! So the opposite is probably also theoretically true, which will help explain if you’ve ever been like, “This meth is good, but what I’d really love is some lasagna.”
The study, researcher at the University of Michigan (seriously how did the University of Wisconsin get scooped on this) and published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine, investigated why some foods cause addictive behaviors and other foods are lentils. It found that the more processed and fatty the food, the more likely it was to cause addiction, which is why no one has ever been addicted to carrots but there are still Little Debbie brownies. The most addictive food was, oh hey this is weird, pizza. (On a college campus? Crazy.)
Indeed, the most addictive foods in the study contained cheese. That’s partly due to its high concentration of casein, a protein that can ignite your brain’s opioid receptors and produce the familiar craving for another hit enjoyed by all those pockmarked yellow-skinned people in the police blotter.
Casein is found in all dairy products, but the cheese-making process concentrates it—which is awesome because Americans consume 35 pounds of cheese a year. That’s a lot of of sweet, sweet casein. And while even eating an aircraft carrier’s worth of cheese will not yield any actual hallucinogenic effect, someone is almost certainly trying right now. To that person we say: No, cheese will NOT replace your drug habit. But it might help keep you extra sharp.