Chocolate is awash in chemicals that resemble everything from coffee to marijuana. That's why we crave it. It's a pharmalogical wonder that we can't resist, right? Wrong. This study proves we're just greedy.
I occasionally feel like I will either eat chocolate or I will tear off my own face. Up until now, I had the excuse that chocolate was specially formulated by nature to be the most addictive substance on Earth. It has theobromine, a compound like the stuff found in coffee. It has cannabinoids. Guess where those compounds are also found. It has phenylethylamine, the "love chemical," which people produce when they have a heart-pounding crush. How could anyone resist such a potent stew? That must be why chocolate took the world by storm, right?
Nope. We just like the flavor of chocolate, sugar, and milk all packaged up in foil — and it's time we accepted it. A recent study took people experiencing chocolate cravings and gave them varying degrees of relief. Some were given chocolate. Some were given white chocolate - which is made with cocoa butter and doesn't have the chemicals in regular chocolate. Some were given little pills containing all the chemicals they'd get in a piece of chocolate. Some were given nothing.
Only one of those groups had their cravings totally alleviated. It's no surprise that the people who got chocolate were sated. Coming in next in satisfaction were the people who were given the relatively-impotent white chocolate. The pill-poppers felt that their chocolate cravings were not in the least reduced, and the people who got nothing just gave the scientists resentful glares and refused to speak.
So, no, it turns out that our bodies are not chemistry aficionados. We are just people who like the taste of chocolate and the feeling of self-delusion.
Top Image: Rexipe Rexipe
Read the study here: Pharmalogical Versus Sensory Factors in the Satiation of Chocolate Cravings.