Mmm ... chocolate. The product of the cacao tree has been winning fans since Aztec leader Montezuma introduced the beverage (chocolate candy as we know it does not appear until early 1800) to the Spanish conqueror Cortez, who took it home to Spain. (While the original drink was rather bitter, the Spanish made a few creative innovations - using sugar instead of chilies, and adding cinnamon and vanilla).
What makes chocolate so irresistible? Much of the allure of chocolate, of course, is taste - deliciously rich concoction that satisfies the strongest passions. But several chemical reactions are also at work. First of all, chocolate stimulates endorphins, produces pleasureable sensation similar to "'high run runner feels after running several miles.
Chocolate also contains a, neurotransmitter serotonin, which acts as an anti-depressant. Other substances such as theobromine and phenylethylamine, a stimulant. However, the truth is that scientists are still not positive how the over 3-100 chemicals contained in chocolate make us feel so good.
So it is unfortunate that chocolate has developed a bad reputation in the front of health. Connoisseurs often worry that confirmed indulging their lust for everything leads to rot your teeth acne, not to mention the need to lose a few pounds.
Fortunately, scientists are beginning to dispel some common myths about the dangers of eating too much chocolate. For example, it is true that eating chocolate can cause acne or make it worse. Nor is chocolate the threat to the health of the teeth that had been thought to be. While cocoa and chocolate contain sugar, which also have properties that act against the tendency of sugar to produce the oral bacteria that eventually leads to decay. In fact, researchers at the Eastman Dental Center in Rochester, New York, concluded that milk chocolate is one of the sandwiches are less likely to contribute to tooth decay because it contains other minerals and phosphates.
Furthermore, although the chocolate may not be the healthiest snacks around, contains many nutrients. Rich in potassium and magnesium, chocolate also provides us with several vitamins - including B1, B2, D and E. What are the calories, no one can claim chocolate is the ultimate diet food. Still, the average chocolate bar contains about 250 calories - low enough for a diet to enjoy one of the few. In addition to indulge your craving for chocolate from time to time may prevent the binge that is the worst enemy of dieters.
Historically, Asia has not been known for a high consumption of chocolate. This is not surprising, because the cocoa tree is native to tropical areas of Central and South America (even if the Filipinos were able to enjoy their home-made version of the cocoa powder, since the Spanish introduced cocoa tree the Philippines in the 16 th century). However, things are changing. Chocolate consumption in China increased by forty percent since 1992. And in 1997, Bernard Callebaut, the famous chocolate manufacturer, felt confident enough to preference for Asian and the Chocolate Factory 'to open in Singapore. Concession to Asian tastes, chocolate is so sweet, also has a higher melting point.
In 2005 in Beijing Hyatt a chocolate fashion show, where models were draped in "clothing" made of different types of chocolate (Source: Asia Times). While chocolate consumption is still much lower in China than in Europe or North America, the market is constantly growing, the Chinese develop a taste for indulgence.