Chocolate comes from the seeds of the tropical Theobroma cocoa tree. Its oldest exploitation dates from the period of the Olmec civilization in Mesoamerica.
Following the discoveries of the Americas by Europeans, the popularity of chocolate exploded in the rest of the world. Since then, chocolate has been a popular food that millions of consumers adore daily, because of its particular flavor, which is both generous and delicious.
Often you have a very strong craving for chocolate after a meal. Why ? Here are some possible explanations why you only think about that piece of chocolate.
“When we wait too long between meals, our blood sugar levels drop and we crave energy, which we get from food,” says Stephanie Rheinart, Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist. And that’s when we turn to high-sugar foods because sweets give us a quick energy spike. But that’s not really ideal.
“Turning to sugar gives you a quick energy boost, but your blood sugar drops quickly and you end up craving even more chocolate,” Stephanie tells us. And before you know it, you’re on a blood sugar roller coaster, with highs and lows.
So what is the solution ? Try not to skip meals, Stephanie suggests, and focus on eating fiber-rich foods that will keep your blood sugar balanced.
Here is some surprising news. Most people have a magnesium deficiency. Now, this very important nutrient is found in chocolate, you guessed it. A single square of dark chocolate contains 41 milligrams of magnesium. (FYI: women should consume 320 milligrams a day).
So what is the solution ? Enjoy raw cocoa that has undergone minimal processing and has not undergone alkaline or Dutch processing. In fact, processed products contain less magnesium. And if you’re experiencing symptoms like muscle aches, anxiety, and trouble sleeping, you can have your magnesium levels checked by a healthcare professional. Instead, stock up on magnesium from natural food sources like beans, nuts, avocados, and leafy green vegetables.
THE STRESS :
You’re late for a meeting, spilled coffee on your shirt, and there’s about 300 things on your to-do list. And since you’ve already had several coffees today, you fall back on the second best solution: chocolate. When we are stressed or worried, we generally fall back on food, and more particularly on what is likely to provide pleasure. When a carbohydrate hits the tongue, a neurotransmitter called dopamine is released and turns on the area of the brain that stimulates reward and pleasure. So for that nanosecond we forget everything we had to do before the chocolate bite and we experience a moment of bliss, but when we swallow it disappears and in turn we crave that blissful feeling, so we reach out for more chocolate. Summary ? We end up suppressing our emotions instead of facing them.
So what is the solution ? Before you grab that candy bar, take a moment to pause and ask yourself why am I craving this right now. If you’re feeling angry, sad, or upset, try to deal with those feelings rather than opting for a quick pick-me-up.
FOOD HABIT :
Every day after dinner, you treat yourself to a scoop or two of chocolate ice cream. This habit is now part of the daily routine and can be difficult to change.
So what is the solution ? This one is simple: you have to make a new habit. Instead of eating ice cream, try finishing your meal with something else, like a cup of mint tea or fruit. We know it’s not as satisfying as your usual dessert, but after a few nights it will be your new habit.
Do hormonal disorders make us want to eat chocolate after meals? Some people might answer yes, but the fact is that there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. However, there are a few possible explanations why some people may crave chocolate after a meal. One is that chocolate contains compounds that can improve mood or energy levels. Another possibility is that eating chocolate triggers the release of endorphins, which have been shown to have a calming effect. In the end, it is always recommended to choose the perfect time to treat yourself and avoid falling into the dilemma of being overweight and other health problems.
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