By Chase Hill / March 5, 2019

This Is Why You’re Addicted To Bacon

It's the "perfect combo" of sweet, salty, smoky and savory.

Cooked bacon slices are arranged for a photograph in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014. Declining supplies of pigs that resulted from a deadly virus that spread across 30 states since the outbreak began last year have pushed up retail-bacon prices 10 percent in 2014 to $6.106 a pound in June, the highest since at least 1980. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Cooked bacon slices are arranged for a photograph in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014. Declining supplies of pigs that resulted from a deadly virus that spread across 30 states since the outbreak began last year have pushed up retail-bacon prices 10 percent in 2014 to $6.106 a pound in June, the highest since at least 1980. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Gail Vance Civille, the founder and president of Sensory Spectrum, a firm that helps companies learn how customer sensory cues can help drive perceptions of products, says people love bacon so much simply because it tastes so good.

The savory sweet caramelized notes from cooking pork fat is “very, very complex,” Civille says. The cooking process allows the fat to breakdown, releasing other sweet, aromatic notes.

In a recent study, bacon was food folks people found most addictive.

“Bacon is just that perfect combo of the sweet, the salty, the smokey and the savory character. Within savory, you’ve got the cured meat… the roasted browned fat… It’s just this perfect combination of ingredients that goes right to the brain, which says, ‘take another bite,'” Linda Papadopoulos, a sensory and consumer research expert, told CNN.

The smell of bacon can also conjure fond memories from your childhood leading you to take another bite. “It just fills the home with this wonderful savory, smoky aroma. It just makes you feel good,” Papadopoulos said.

Yes, bacon can be terrible for you, but like everything, enjoying your favorite foods in moderation can be okay. “It has such a great flavor profile and that crispy crunchy texture, and the way it releases the flavor,” Papadopoulos explained. “It’s a comfort food — and you need to have those comfort foods in your diet.”

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