I'm sad, give me chocolate!


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Actually, this will probably help. Chocolate is always a delicious treat, but it actually has some benefits, other than being tasty.
Chocolate is sweet and rich; even dark chocolate. The sweetness in chocolate is a stimulant for the hypothalamus, which controls our brain's pleasing sensations. When we eat chocolate, we temporarily distract our minds from what is upsetting. 
Chocolate also raises the level of serotonin in the brain.This hormone controls mood, and is often regulated by antidepressants. This tasty treat also can activate anandamides, because it contains unsaturated N-acylethanoamines, which are known to cause heightened sensitivity and euphoria. 
Some researchers have compared these effects to that of marijuana, which to me seems crazy! But after reading these articles, I can see why this makes sense.
Chocolate isn't actually making people "high", however, it is associated with giving people that uplifted and good feeling because of those chemical properties.
The coco-plant used to make chocolate also contains a chemical called theobromine, which may have an effect on people being "chocoholics". It isn't an addictive, but it is a stimulant like caffeine that make people more energetic and alert.
Scientists have also confirmed that dark chocolate is good for your health. The higher the coco content the higher levels of antioxidants such as flavonoids, which reportedly prevent cancers, promote cardiac health, and aid with high blood pressure.
Chocolate is an aphrodisiac. .. I thought this claim was the most interesting. I mean I get it, it puts you in a better mood, but why so intense? I read up more on this subject, and found that those properties are limited. A study was done in Italy regarding this subject, and their findings were miniscule. The effects of eating 3 servings a day or none had no significant difference.
Chemically, a coco fix isn't going to instantly make you happy. It might make the sting of a terrible day a little better, but you're depression won't turn around. Eating too much of it isn't going to help either. Moderation is always important, but if you're feeling sad, why not have a few Kisses.

dark-chocolate.jpg

3 Comments

My mom always told me that dark chocolate was really good for you, although I rarely believed her. I love sweets, and anything dark chocolate is my go to snack, especially with caramel in the middle! After realizing that I had a dark chocolate addiction I decided to do some research to see if my mother had been telling me was actually true. I came across this article on dark chocolate being healthy for you and as it turns out, it is! Thanks mom!!

I love dark chocolate and the fact that it is good for you, obviously makes me like it even more. It is a sweet treat and the best pick me. According to an article on clevelandclinic.org, dark chocolate is even good for cardiovascular health because of the flavonoids in it that help fight off toxins and repair damage. http://my.clevelandclinic.org/heart/prevention/nutrition/chocolate.aspx

The Huffington Post also wrote an article on dark chocolate in 2013 and stated that it repairs dry skin, diminishes wrinkles, protects you from UV rays and even helps your hair to grow. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/06/dark-chocolate-beauty-benefits_n_3710027.html

With those kind of health benefits, what is there to feel guilty about when indulging in some delectable chocolate?

Gabrielle, when I read the part of your blog post about how chocolate raises the serotonin in the brain ... let's just say I didn't find it hard to believe. I am definitely a believer in all of chocolate's health benefits, as whenever I find my self stressed or just in the mood to relax I do see the benefit of eating a few m&ms or hershey kisses. I agree with you that even while it has some health benefits, one has to be careful about emotional eating. Kelsey, thanks for sharing the link to the Huffington Post article it was a good one.

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