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Food Addiction: The Influence of Big Tobacco Plus Thoughts on a Role for Weight Management Drugs

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Survey findings on addictive food behaviors among adults aged 50 to 80 years reveal a significant gap between men and women with women more than twice as likely as men to report a level of behavior that affects their wellbeing. The survey, administered by the National Poll on Healthy Aging, also found a generational effect, with women aged 50 to 64 years showing a higher level of addiction to highly processed foods than those aged ≥65 years.

In an interview with Patient Care®, addiction researcher Ashley Gearhardt, PhD, author of the Yale Food Addiction Scale, talks about aggressive food marketing to women and her thoughts on how the advent of the new, highly effective medications for weight management may help with food addiction. Director of the National Poll on Healthy Aging Jeffrey Kullgren, MD, MS, MPH, joins Gearhardt for the second half of the conversation.


More from the Patient Care conversation with Drs Gearhardt and Kullgren:

When is a Nacho Like Cocaine? Author of the Yale Food Addiction Scale Explains

PCP Perspective: Should Primary Care Add Screening for Food Addiction to the To-Do List?

Highly Processed Food is Produced to Be as Rewarding as Humanly Possible, Says Food Addiction Expert

Subclinical Food Addiction Common Among Older Adults, Women Twice as Vulnerable as Men: Expert Interview

One in 4 Older US Adults Meets Criteria for Food Addiction: Experts Explain


Gearhardt's lab at the University of Michigan (U-M) teamed with the National Poll on Healthy Aging, based at the U-M Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation and under the direction of Jeffery Kullgren, MD, MS, MPH, to look more closely at a population rarely included in research on food addiction. The National Poll on Healthy Aging (NPHA) surveys are fielded twice per year using a sample of approximately 2,000 respondents aged 50 to 80 years drawn from a nationally representative probability-based panel of U.S. households. The NPHA is supported by AARP and Michigan Medicine, U-M's academic medical center, in Ann Arbor.


For more information:

Food and Addiction Science and Treatment Lab (Dr Gearhardt's lab)

The Yale Food Addiction Scale

The National Poll on Healthy Aging


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