Preference for sweet foods and higher body mass index in patients being treated in long-term methadone maintenance.Subst Use Misuse. 2007; 42(10):1555-66.SU
Opiate use has been associated with preference for sweets in both humans and animals. In 2002, the food preferences and eating habits of non-institutionalized patients in methadone treatment and controls were measured and compared. Questionnaires were administered to 14 patients and 14 controls with similar demographic characteristics (there were 19 women and 9 men ranging in age from 19 to 59 years). The patients reported higher consumption of sweets, higher eagerness to consume sweet foods, and a wish to consume quantities larger than that desired by controls. Patients had a significantly higher body mass than controls. The study's limitations are noted. These findings suggest a link between methadone and a desire for calorically dense foods. A study of eating behavior is warranted.