February 22, 2013

Cheetos — "one of the most marvelously constructed foods on the planet, in terms of pure pleasure."

Steven Witherly, author of "Why Humans Like Junk Food," "ticked off a dozen attributes of the Cheetos that make the brain say more. But the one he focused on most was the puff’s uncanny ability to melt in the mouth. 'It’s called vanishing caloric density... If something melts down quickly, your brain thinks that there’s no calories in it . . . you can just keep eating it forever.'"

From a very long NYT Magazine article titled "The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food."

39 comments:

Mitchell the Bat said...

"THERE IS NO FUCKING DRUMMER BETTER THAN NEIL PEART!!!"

-- Chester Cheetah

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I'm sure Freud would have something to say about the shape. Myself, I've always preferred Bugles

Mitchell the Bat said...

BTW, I've found that the cure for the habit of eating junk food is to actually pay attention to it while eating it.

traditionalguy said...

Just say no. The orange fingers gives you away.

EDH said...

The paradox of Crunchy Cheetos, my favorite.

Peter said...

One can make the argument that engineered foods are a type of superstimulus that tends to overwhelm rational choice.

But if you acknowledge that, is it necessary to drift into Bloomberg-style banning of Big Gulp sodas?

Moose said...

Attended a seminar last nite on healthy kids, weight and nutrition. The pediatrician called Flaming Hot Cheetos a "truly evil food" as it was entirely artificial and somehow (in her words) was made to be addicting. I was amazed, but in the presence of true believers, you learn to say nothing...

virgil xenophon said...

I always generally preferred Cheese-it crackers myself, but will admit I AM really partial to Cheetos' crunchy Salsa Con Queso version..

Shanna said...

CheeseItz are awesome!

When I was a kid, I liked the cheese balls that came in some sort of can that was reasonably small. I guess they don't make them anymore, because Target only had a giant tub of cheeseballs for sale.

virgil xenophon said...

PS: We pilots/"avaitors" (h/t, USN) in the armed forces, both active and retired, often joke about the AF Drone pilots in Las Vegas flying their "Barco-jets" and getting Cheetos dust all over their "flight suits." It is often sarcastically suggested they revert to wearing the old Navy flt suits of the 50s/early 60s which were colored bright Air-Sea Rescue Orange so as to hide all the Cheetos dust, LOL!

Nonapod said...

I've always preferred Bachman Jax puffed cheese curls to Cheetos. I prefer the puffier texture to crunchier Cheeto shape.

Original Mike said...

I don't like Cheetos. I think the "melt in your mouth" thing is one reason why. If I want "chips", I'll eat chips. If I want cheese, I'll eat cheese. I see no reason for Cheetos to exist.

Seeing Red said...

We visited Hong Kong. We walked into a 7-11 to get some snacks, bought the cheese puffs.

BLECH. It looked & tasted like they blew some cheeze dust on them.

They also had prawn-flavored puffs.

edutcher said...

They are as nothing compared to Wise Barbecue Potato Chips.

Along with, Mrs Paul's Fish Sticks, Tastykakes, Morton's Chocolate Cream Pies, and Oscar Mayer hot dogs, they were one of the five basic food groups of my childhood.

ad hoc said...

I take a back seat to no one when it come to a love of junk food, but I have always detested Cheetos, cheese puffs, etc. Maybe it's the bright life-jacket orange powder.

McTriumph said...

Cheetos, the puffed are baked, the crunchy are fried. I prefer crunchy, as does my springer. Tip: you can train a dog to perform any task with fried Cheetos.

Methadras said...

Mitchell the Bat said...

"THERE IS NO FUCKING DRUMMER BETTER THAN NEIL PEART!!!"

-- Chester Cheetah


LIES!!! Phil Collins!!!

[ducks and exits stage left]

Methadras said...

McTriumph said...

Cheetos, the puffed are baked, the crunchy are fried. I prefer crunchy, as does my springer. Tip: you can train a dog to perform any task with fried Cheetos.


My boxer one time got into half a bag of cheetos. Watching him throw up neon-orange goo was fun. Thank goodness he did it outside. The next day, seeing that he crapped out the other half of the neon-orange goodie made me laugh. The stuff probably would have glowed in the dark.

McTriumph said...

Methadras
Not Cheetos related, but my current springer had a taste for leather as a pup. she ate so many watch bands, belts and shoes I expected her to poop out a nice leather chair or saddle.
A prior springer had a thing for cherry flavored Rolaids. My sister's young children thought I had a perpetual Easter egg hunt in the backyard.

EMD said...

Aren't crunchy Cheetos the original, default Cheetos?






Paul S said...

There is no such thing as "addictive" junk food. That is simply the newest junk science being peddled to a gullible public.

Food can be pleasurable, but no flavorings have the ability to cross the blood/brain barrier and bind to brain receptors like true addictive substances can.

Get over it folks, you're mostly fat because of poor personal choices.

Amartel said...

The thing in the photo is not a cheeto, that is a cheese puff.

Amartel said...

There's a difference.

Amartel said...

Cheetos do not "melt in your mouth" but Cheese Puffs do.
(Cheese puffs are gross.)

Amartel said...

He's thinking of Pirate's Booty.
Which is like cheese puffs but with less international orange.

Amartel said...

Pirate's Booty is hipster cheese puffs. They loved that shit. Until they realized they were eating cheese puffs, the horror, and started casting about for someone to blame. Corporations, of course, and their evil science of addiction. They all sit around at their corporate Dr. Evil conferences (and one of them is named Mudd, can you believe?) and dream up ways to make people eat their horrible addictive product.

Amartel said...

But he can't blame Pirate's Booty because he knows people who used to eat that stuff. He used to eat that stuff. Blame the Cheeto, indict it like the ham sandwich that it wishes it was. Bonus points for pretending that it melts in your mouth when, in fact, it does not. Spoken like someone who's never eaten a cheeto in his life.

wyo sis said...

If it feels good eat it.
It's less harmful than most of the stuff that feels good.

McTriumph said...

EMD said...
Aren't crunchy Cheetos the original, default Cheetos?

Without consulting a Frito history book, I'd say yes. They were invented in Texas, Texas is in the South, South = fried. Either way Cheetos are just fine corn mill and water force through a Wenger extruder, pretty much tasteless till they are seasoned with oil and cheese.

McTriumph said...

FYI, if you want to make Cheetos at home you can buy a Wenger extruder made in Sabetha, Kansas, but you will have to increase the electric service to your home by a factor of about four or five.

F.U. Scott Fitzgerald said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
McTriumph said...

Cheese puffs or Cheez Doodles are basically the same as baked Cheetos, mostly air.

Fr Martin Fox said...

The article was just as unctuous, with all it's "concern" for us poor sheep, as you might expect.

While there's room for criticism of materialism and consumerism here, basically I was impressed with the very corporate folks the NYT treated as if they were devising a new form of crack cocaine. Here are people who work very hard, with the sole goal of finding ways to make me even happier. With their products, to be sure.

What, would you prefer they spent all that time trying to make our food taste worse?

I repeat my suggestion, offered once before on a gun-control thread: let's just specify where all those people who don't want to make decisions can go live. North Korea or California comes to mind. Go there, and have no worries, someone else will protect you from Cheetos.

Balfegor said...

Cheetos give me a headache. Or at least, when I was young, I found myself getting headaches often enough after eating Cheetos that I have not eaten them since I was 11 or 12 or so. Maybe it was something else, but Cheetos have gone into my little basket of headache-triggers-to-avoid, along with bright light, flashing lights, too much sleep, too little sleep, the smell of gasoline, and too little water.

Amartel said...

Nooo, not California. Please. Not Helpful, Sir, to them or to the few conservatives left in Cali. People here in Cali can still ignore reality, pretend they have control over their lives and that the bureaucratic behemoth isn't utterly ruining everything.
Send the useful idiots straight to North Korea so they can experience the reality of end-stage statism.
We could set up an exchange program. Our muddled asses in exchange for their huddled masses.

McTriumph said...

Balfegor
I could easily give up Cheetos, but never the sweet smell of gasoline

JAL said...

Cheetos schmeetos...

When we lived in India we craved Fritos and orange juice.

I still (decades later) savor my Fritos and my glasses of orange juice.

Sigh.

McTriumph said...

JAL
Fritos and Cheetos were invented by the same person in San Antonio, Elmer Doolin.

kentuckyliz said...

Cheetos are the subject of one of my favorite Paul and Storm rejected jingles. You can see it here...but it's a mashup so it starts with the greatest guitarist scene mentioned at the top of this thread...then it goes to the jingle to which I refer.