To carry out the study, Honohan and two other students devised a maze. On one side of the maze, hungry rats would find an Oreo. On the other side, hungry rats would find (groan) rice cakes.
Unsurprisingly, all the rats gravitated toward the Oreo, and like all cultured creatures, they would “ break it open and eat the middle first.”
The researchers compared the results of their study to a similar study in which rats were either given a shot of cocaine or morphine on one side of the maze or a shot of saline on the other. It turns out that the rats conditioned with Oreos spent as much time on the “drug” side of the maze as those who were conditioned with actual drugs. Even more worrisome, the researchers found that the Oreos “activated significantly more neurons than cocaine or morphine.”
Link via Gawker