You've heard the saying time and time again: Weed is a gateway drug that'll get you hooked on (fill in the blank). As it turns out, marijuana is the least of your problems considering the world is a smorgasbord of addictive things.
Here are ten common addictions that are way tougher to quit than giant, milky bong rips.
It's a sneaky addiction you might not expect but it's estimated approximately 2 to 8 percent of the US population has compulsive shopping tendencies. Researchers aren't clear on which part of the brain drives the shopping behavior, but evidence has shown it taps into the same dopamine reward loop involved with drug addiction.
People who tend to binge eat share similar behavior with drug addicts. Bingers will spend large amounts of time thinking about or planning sessions of indulgence. Oftentimes, bingers will hide their behavior from friends and family.
Gambling is one of the most addictive human behaviors known to researchers. Scientists have discovered gambling disorders mirror substance addiction in brain function, physiology and treatment.
High Fructose Corn Syrup
A 2010 Princeton research study found high fructose corn syrup to be as addictive as cocaine. Further, Canadian researchers have found high fructose corn syrup can lead to addictive behavioral changes in lab rats that are "similar to those produced by drugs like cocaine."
Believe it or not there's a syndrome called "Internet Gaming Disorder" that gained attention after reports of young men in Asia becoming so addicted to online gaming they stopped eating, socializing and even stopped going to their jobs.
Did you see this one coming? Much like prescription painkillers can be addictive, acetaminophen can also be more addictive than you realize. Some users have reported feeling sudden urges to take it throughout the day and won't leave home without it.
Researchers have found sex can increase activity in the brain that mimics the activity from addictive drugs. Approximately 3 to 6 percent of Americans struggle with compulsive sex.
Approximately 7 percent of the US population was classified as alcohol dependent or alcohol addicted in a 2010 study. The symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal syndrome are so severe they can cause intense cravings for booze that affect the brain's reward system.
Yep, it's still highly addictive and it's still legal. And it's worse than cannabis in every way and is more addictive than even cocaine.
Caffeine is a widely abused stimulant of the central nervous system. People who use a minimum of 100mg of caffeine per day (approximately one cup of coffee) are likely to become dependent. Caffeine withdrawal symptoms are a reality causing users to suffer headaches, muscle pain, depression, nausea, lethargy and even vomiting. Approximately 90 percent of the US population uses caffeine daily.
This post was originally written by Rick Bakas for WeedHorn.