The Effects of Chocolate

The Effects of Chocolate
Chocolate is one of the most popular foods all around the world. It has been said that over 2 billion pounds of chocolate is annually consumed in the United States and the Swiss consume over 22 pounds per person per year1. Despite its increasing consumption chocolate has had and still is having a lot of negative effects on the human health. Some people think that it?s addictive and eat more and more of it whilst there are some who think the other way. Chocolate is gaining more and more popularity day by day and has proved to be a delicacy for people of all ages. But what people need to be aware of is whether ?chocolate is addictive or not?. Regardless of its tempting taste chocolate tends to have a lot of negative side effects in the human body. It is proved to cause migraine problems, obesity, dental cavities and even breast cancer. Saturated fat in chocolate also increases cholesterol level. Excessive intake of chocolate leads to heart diseases. Theobromine and caffeine in chocolate is said to cause ?fibrocystic breast disease?.
Cysts in the breast, more common during menstruation, are usually affected by the properties in chocolate. Methylxanthines are also found in chocolate, it tends to stimulate chemical activities in the human body. It increases the production of cyst fluids and also affects the tissues in breasts, which has been proved to cause breast cancer. Women with ?fibrocystic breast disease? are said to be more vulnerable to breast cancer through extreme consumption of chocolate. Theobromine is also proved to cause mental and physical relaxation, which also promotes sexual awareness. Chocolate also contains great amounts of chemicals known as phenylethylamine, which is a compound connected to amphetamine. It is said that this chemical cause mild emotional activities such anger, confusion, hyperactivity, irritability and sometimes-even hallucinations. It also has a mild antidepressant effect on the consumers? brain. Though there have been very few cases related to such problems till now. Throughout years scientists have been trying to prove whether it is addictive or not. There have been certain conclusions of it being mildly addictive. Caffeine is one of the many addictions that have overwhelmed a lot of people all around the world. It is said that caffeine is also one of the many ingredients in chocolate; therefore there are certain chances of it being addictive. Caffeine is a commonly described as a biologically active molecule, which stimulates the brain. Some chocolates are said to contain more caffeine than there is on one cup of coffee. Besides caffeine, scientists have recently discovered chocolate having connection to certain properties found in marijuana. However, it not as extreme as marijuana. anandamide, is one of them but since chocolate doesn?t contain great quantities of this substance it does not have as much of an effect as marijuana. It is said that the acids in the stomach breaks anandamide down before it reaches the bloodstream2. It also produces a calm feeling. People thinking that they are chocoholics consume more. Depression is one of the most common reasons for its consumptions. Individuals as such think that they feel more relieved after having chocolate while suffering from depression. It is also possible for people to gain chocolate eating habits from other people or from cultural factors. Easter, is one of the cultural events where chocolate happens to hold a lot of importance. During the Easter, to boost the chocolate business, chocolate companies put up great sales, bring out tempting flavors and appearances and advertise a lot. Due to this, people tend to buy more chocolate. Chocolates are also commonly used as gifts. Viewing all my research on this topic, I think chocolate is more of a mental stimulant rather than an addictive drug. However, even though the stimulant is very much craved all around the world, it also has a lot of negative side effects. It was quite hard to base my essay on my research. There were websites that held similar opinions about chocoholics whereas there were others that completely disagreed with it. However, few of the websites that disagreed with the fact that chocolate was harmful and addictive, were websites of chocolate companies. Nestle was one as such3. In the Nestle website, there was also an advertisement of one of the company?s chocolates. Due to such factors, there are possible chances of the information to be biased in order to promote the chocolate business. Science can go as far as informing the world about chocolates? properties. It is more up to the people to conclude the matter. Chocolate companies have quite a lot of media coverage. There are advertisements almost everywhere, from billboards on the streets to pop-ups in the Internet and day-by-day it is being promoted even more. It is true that several chocolates are a lot less harmful than others, however, there are more than are harmful. It is not a matter of banning chocolate but let people know that excessive consumption can actually be harmful. People could be educated on how to handle their chocolate eating habits or chocolate companies could come up with different ingredients in place of the harmful ones. Due to the highly increasing consumption rate, science cannot really take any huge steps such as banning the harmful chocolate companies, as it will obviously have a great affect on the worldwide chocolate business. Such matters could even lead to severe disputes. Being a chocolate lover myself, it is indeed quite a hard decision to make. However, I think a controlled amount wouldn?t do as much harm. People need to be more aware of the effects and consequences to make them think twice before buying a load of chocolates. Unfortunately, there aren?t enough sources and educators worldwide and this factor remains unseen by more two-thirds of the world?s population.

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