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Publisher's Summary

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER •

From the number one New York Times best-selling author of Salt Sugar Fat comes a “gripping” (The Wall Street Journal) exposé of how the processed food industry exploits our evolutionary instincts, the emotions we associate with food, and legal loopholes in their pursuit of profit over public health. 

“The processed food industry has managed to avoid being lumped in with Big Tobacco - which is why Michael Moss’s new book is so important.” (Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit)

Everyone knows how hard it can be to maintain a healthy diet. But what if some of the decisions we make about what to eat are beyond our control? Is it possible that food is addictive, like drugs or alcohol? And to what extent does the food industry know, or care, about these vulnerabilities? In Hooked, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Michael Moss sets out to answer these questions - and to find the true peril in our food.

Moss uses the latest research on addiction to uncover what the scientific and medical communities - as well as food manufacturers - already know: that food, in some cases, is even more addictive than alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs. Our bodies are hardwired for sweets, so food giants have developed 56 types of sugar to add to their products, creating in us the expectation that everything should be cloying; we’ve evolved to prefer fast, convenient meals, hence our modern-day preference for ready-to-eat foods. Moss goes on to show how the processed food industry - including major companies like Nestlé, Mars, and Kellogg’s - has tried not only to evade this troubling discovery about the addictiveness of food but to actually exploit it. For instance, in response to recent dieting trends, food manufacturers have simply turned junk food into junk diets, filling grocery stores with “diet” foods that are hardly distinguishable from the products that got us into trouble in the first place. As obesity rates continue to climb, manufacturers are now claiming to add ingredients that can effortlessly cure our compulsive eating habits. 

A gripping account of the legal battles, insidious marketing campaigns, and cutting-edge food science that have brought us to our current public health crisis, Hooked lays out all that the food industry is doing to exploit and deepen our addictions, and shows us why what we eat has never mattered more.

©2021 Michael Moss (P)2021 Random House Audio

What the critics say

“Michael Moss delivers again with a deep, well-written investigation into food addiction and mass food production. With so many companies competing for our attention, dollars, and stomachs, it’s more important than ever to educate ourselves about food and arm ourselves against efforts to get us hooked. This is a very important read for anyone who cares about their health.”(Sylvia Tara, author of The Secret Life of Fat)

“No one has done more to reveal the intentional and underhanded ways in which food companies manipulate our desires and eating habits than Michael Moss. In Hooked, he shows how these ongoing crimes must be challenged and stopped. A must-read for anyone who cares about food, general well-being, and justice.” (Mark Bittman, author of Animal, Vegetable, Junk)

“The processed food industry has managed to avoid being lumped in with Big Tobacco - which is why Michael Moss’s new book is so important. Hooked shows how food manufacturers have taken advantage of our habits, our biology, our psychological quirks, and our ignorance to transform foods into addictive substances. He takes us into laboratories and courtrooms, kitchens and legislatures - and shows us how we can win our freedom back.” (Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit)

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What listeners say about Hooked

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  • Lorena Kazmierski
  • 2021-04-04

Empowering Read

What I like about this book: this is information that confirms what I have suspected for awhile (as someone who has battled a lifelong sugar addiction). I feel empowered to keep up the battle, knowing that it’s not just “weakness” or “lack of willpower” on my part. (I did quit smoking 20 years ago! So, I must be doing something right!) The research done by the author seems careful and fairly objective.
What I don’t like: the reader for this audio version is too dramatic in his reading. The tone gives the information a tabloid-ish presentation, and takes away from the objective intention. A paper version might be better.

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  • Pen Name
  • 2021-03-14

Awesome Work!

Thank You Michael Moss for your unique work. I'm an avid nutrition researcher and I love the book.

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  • Mitchell Hearns Bishop
  • 2021-05-02

Narrator?

Bizarre, hucksterish, overly dramatic narration makes it difficult to take the content seriously. Not sure what was intended, I don’t need to sold.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-04-24

informative

this is information that should be mandatory in grade school!!! we should grow up knowing this.

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  • D. Hamm
  • 2021-04-17

well researched and clearly presented

This is a must read for everyone. We simply MUST understand what is in our food and how it affects us. Take responsibility for your health and life, read thus book and don't forget what you learn.

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  • Corkster52
  • 2021-04-17

Great information

I really enjoyed listening to this book and every day, after listening to a segment, I scrambled to my computer to find the studies and authors of the topics he mentions.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2021-04-11

bravo Moss!

As I have come to expect nothing short of extraordinary research and balanced insight from Michael Moss I was delighted with this book. I was also frightened by the unwitting damage many have done to their bodies. I will make food choices far differently now!

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  • Chris
  • 2021-05-08

poor narration

narration was way overdramatic. also sounded like 5h3 narrator was totally unfamiliar with the text. otherwise an excellent book, highly recommended!

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  • T-Man
  • 2021-05-05

Informative and important

Hooked takes a look at how food companies manipulate us with their vibrant packaging and ever changing product lines. Humans love variety and are hardwired to seek out sugary/calorie dense meals. The onus is on the individuals eating to make healthy choices because the food companies’ main concern is profit. They operate within the law and thus far, have not been held accountable for anyone’s weight gain. The author recommends that we love what we eat instead of eating what we love. We can accomplish this by making new positive memories with healthy food.

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  • shopper74
  • 2021-05-05

The narrator is all wrong

He would be great for a kids adventure series, but his dramatic, theateical delivery is a little much for this content.