Washington DC: Want to get rid of cravings for drugs, food...? Well it's time to start playing Tetris as a new study reveals that playing the puzzle game can weaken your desire.
Jackie Andrade of the Plymouth University said that playing Tetris decreased craving strength for drugs, food, and other activities from 70 percent to 56 percent.
Andrade said that playing a visually interesting game, like Tetris, occupied the mental processes that support desires, adding that it was hard to imagine something vividly and play Tetris at the same time.
In the study, 31 undergraduates, aged 18-27, were prompted seven times a day via text message to report on any cravings they were feeling.
Fifteen members of the group were required to play Tetris on an iPod for three minutes, before reporting their craving levels. Craving was recorded in 30 percent of the occasions, most commonly for food and non-alcoholic drinks, which were reported on nearly two-thirds of those occasions.
The study found that twenty-one percent of cravings were for substances categorised as drugs, including coffee, cigarettes, wine and beer, and 16 percent were for miscellaneous activities such as sleeping, playing videogames, socialising with friends, and sexual intercourse. Food cravings tended to be slightly weaker than those in the other categories.
Andrade said that as a support tool, Tetris could help people manage their cravings in their daily lives and over extended time periods.
The study is published in the journal Addictive Behaviors.