[ExI] addiction and alcohol

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Sat May 2 01:42:39 UTC 2015

On 2 May 2015 at 10:26, Keith Henson <hkeithhenson at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Apr 30, 2015 at 5:00 AM,  Stathis Papaioannou <stathisp at gmail.com>
> snip
>> Getting old and weak is maladaptive, but evolution has not eliminated
>> ageing because people reproduce before age affects their ability to do
>> so. It could be the same with addiction.
> Possible I suppose.
> On the other hand, drug addiction, particularly to opiates and alcohol
> declines with age.  I think the reason is that the brain reward
> systems are strongly connected to reproductive success.  When people
> get old and the need for brain rewards for activities that contribute
> to early reproductive success falls, so does the intensity of the drug
> or cult rewards.  Old junkies and old alcoholics often quit in their
> mid 40s.

It is possible that people who abuse substances have *increased*
reproductive success, since they may be more promiscuous and less
likely to take measures to avoid pregnancy.

> Cults mess with the brain reward system as well as drugs and to some
> extent older people sometimes do get out of cults.  But it's not
> mechanistic.  Some people stay with the scientology cult until they
> get old and feeble.  Then the cult sets them out on the curb with a
> bag containing their meager possessions.
> Keith
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Stathis Papaioannou

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