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Chocolate’s Effects On The Human Brain & Body
Why Dark Chocolate Can Benefit You
January 19, 2023
Have you ever heard chocolate be called “the love drug”? This is not a way to market chocolate for Valentine’s Day—it’s because of the ingredients and chemicals chocolate contains! Here are some interesting facts about chocolate’s ingredients and the effects they have on you.
One chemical dark chocolate contains is phenylethylamine, which is an organic compound that stimulates the human nervous system. Phenylethylamine can relieve depression, increase attention and activity, and show increased levels of dopamine. Phenylethylamine gives the brain a buzz from the dopamine, which is a similar feeling to being in love; thus giving it its name.
Flavanols is another chemical in dark chocolate that gives you a similar feeling. Flavanols increases blood flow to the brain which helps with memory, reaction time, and attention span. It also suppresses the release of cortisol (primary stress hormone) which reduces stress.
Another chemical chocolate contains is magnesium. In dark chocolate there is 41 mg of magnesium in every 28.4g, which is about 25 small squares of chocolate. Magnesium is good for energy production and essential for synthesis (the production of chemical compounds by reaction from simpler materials.) One example of synthesis is protein synthesis, which is the production of protein. Protein is used for structures (hair, nails, skin) and energy in the body. Synthesis of protein is crucial and magnesium helps greatly with it. Your focus, mood, sleep, and memory can be improved just by ingesting around 30g of magnesium.
Just these three chemicals in chocolate can improve your everyday life. But these are all from dark chocolate. Chocolate itself is the most widely craved food in the world. Milk chocolate doesn’t help those cravings. Milk chocolate is cheaply sold, contains more sugar, and doesn’t satisfy you. High quality dark chocolate will satisfy you faster, leaving you eating less.