Chocolate Health


It is believed that chocolate triggers acne and overloaded cholesterol in the bloodstream, while some believe that chocolate is an aphrodisiac and also generates a chemical substance called endorphin which reduces pain and produces a sense of well being. In fact, chocolate contains more than 300 known chemicals and scientists have been working on each chemical and chemical combinations to figure out what are the stimulant effects after consuming chocolate and to prove if the reputation of chocolate are beyond question.

Caffeine, a substance in coffee and tea, is the most famous of chocolate’s chemical ingredient yet it can be found only in small quantities. Theobromine is the primary alkaloid found in cocoa and chocolate and is a weak stimulant contained in slightly higher amounts. Tryptophan, an essential amino acid that is a precursor to serotonin which is a significant neurotransmitter concerning with mood control. Phenethylamine ( a so-called love chemical) is an endogenous alkaloid and monoamine. It is quickly metabolized by the enzyme MAO-B, impeding important concentrations from getting to the brain. Pharmacologist Ryan J. Huxtable described chocolate as “more than food but less than a drug”.

According to a medical research, chocolate strongly delivers pleasure to consumers while melting in one’s mouth as it, bit by bit, lowers the temperature in the human body and generates an increase in brain activity and heart rate. The effect usually lasts for some time after the activity has ended. The research has shown that chocolate input causes a release of serotonin in the brain, which produces feelings of happiness, also indicates that addicts of the drug heroin are more likely to have a greater liking of chocolate possibly because of chocolate triggers dopamine release in human’s brain system of reinforcement.

Likewise, cocoa or dark chocolate carries certain beneficial effects on human health. Dark chocolate, with its high quantities of cocoa, is full with the flavonoids epicatechin and gallic acid, which are believed to hold cardioprotective properties. Cocoa causes an important antioxidant action, shielding against LDL oxidation. Two thirds of total fat in chocolate comes from a type of saturated fat known as stearic acid and mono unsaturated fat known as oleic acid. Stearic acid does not raise the level of LDL cholesterol in our bloodstreams, unlike other saturated fats.

Chocolate is reputed to being an aphrodisiac which is related to simple, sensual pleasure of its consumption. It has been said that serotonin and other chemical substances contained in chocolate especially phenethylamine are mild sexual stimulants. However, there’s no official research claiming that chocolate really serves as a type of aphrodisiac.

Meanwhile, one of the most well-known effects from chocolate is acne, which keeps many women away from being chocolate eaters. The University of Pennsylvania and the US Naval Academy conducted experiments which showed that consumption of chocolate had nothing to do with the developing of acne. Acne is not a result of chocolate itself but milk mixed in the chocolate.

Even if some substances in chocolate are harmless to human, they are toxic to animals such as horses, dogs, cats and parrots. The is hazardous to them as these animals cannot perfectly metabolize chemicals in chocolate, should they be fed chocolate, the theobromine will be in their bloodstream for up to 20 hours and may cause these animals to have epileptic seizures, heart attacks, internal bleeding and finally death.