Think of the last time you had a piece of chocolate. You’re happy, you eat chocolate; sad, you eat chocolate; Stressed, you eat chocolate. Young or old, chocolate makes everyone happy and it actually does make you feel good.
For some, it may be a guilty pleasure. But, seeing or even inhaling the sweet aroma of chocolate is just enough to make a chocolate-lover’s heart skip a beat.
But have you ever thought about the reasons behind why chocolate gives you such good feelings?
The real explanation for this is the natural composition of chocolate. As we’re all aware, chocolate comes from cocoa and over 300 naturally occurring chemicals are present in chocolate.
Some of these chemicals has an effect on the human brain. The chemicals involve in the release of certain neurotransmitters in the brain.Neurotransmitters are like tiny chemical particles that act as signals to pass messages between two neurons.
How do neurotransmitters and all these chemicals affect our brain? In every way; when you eat chocolate, some of the neurotransmitters that have positive effects on the human body are released. Here’s what some of the chemicals do to your brain and body.
Sometimes called the “love drug” as it is linked with the initial joy of falling in love.
Promotes emotions such as excitement, nervousness, feelings of attraction.
Acts an anti-depressant.
An amino acid found in chocolate, that is present in small quantities and involved in the production of serotonin (neurotransmitter) by the brain.
Serotonin acts as a mood-lifter.
The effects are similar to that of caffeine.
Activates dopamine producing receptors. Dopamine gives the feeling of intense happiness and a similar effect to being “high”. The chemical THC present in marijuana that is responsible for the “high” effect, activates the same receptor as anadamide.
But, you have to eat at least 25 pounds of chocolate to get the same high” effect as marijuana.
Chocolate release endorphins to the brain, resulting in a decrease of stress and pain.
Now that you have also clarified the reason behind your ‘high”-ness and all the other pleasurable feelings you get when you eat chocolate, there’s more good news.
Scientists have also been able to find out that dark chocolate has a beneficial effect on our health. Higher the concentration of coca, higher the presence of antioxidants
Scientific evidence states that certain antioxidants present in dark chocolate are able to decrease the levels of stress.
So the next time you eat chocolate, don’t feel so bad.