Chocolate- Is It Addictive?
Are you one of the millions of individuals who identify as chocoholics? When you pass a chocolate shop, do you become weak in the knees? Maintain emergency chocolate in your drawer and hide it from view? Give in to your midnight desires for chocolate? You won't be judged, so relax. The reason why chocolate does feel addictive is because eating sweet or high-fat foods makes our brains as pleased as our taste sensations. Serotonin, which helps balance our moods and prevent depression, is released by fatty, sugary foods into the brain. Additionally, studies suggest that people might develop a dependence on sugar and fat in their diet because these foods stimulate the brain's pleasure regions. Some chocolate addicts even display characteristics like cravings, erratic eating, anxiety, and odd moods that are common in drug addictions.
But does chocolate actually meet the criteria for addiction? You can jokingly claim that you are dependent on chocolate and cannot survive without it. Let's examine the science instead.
Addiction is made up of three basic elements:
-a strong desire
-a loss of control over the craving's target
-the usage of the item despite its negative effects
Similar characteristics explain drug addiction, however research indicates that people can display these traits when eating particular foods as well. The investigations even found similarities in the brain activity of drug users and those who had chocolate milkshakes. But these are exceptional cases, not representative of the vast majority of people. Some claim that phenylethylamine, a substance present in chocolate, serves as evidence that it is indeed addictive. A substance called phenylethylamine is said to mimic the brain chemistry of someone who is in love. However, items like cheese, almonds, and avocados have higher phenylethylamine contents, and not many of us are making late-night excursions to the store for an avocado fix.
Although the American Psychiatric Association's handbook, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, does not recognize chocolate addiction as a diagnosable condition, it does assert that even though chocolate consumption still produces addiction-like symptoms that can undoubtedly affect how you feel. According to the widespread agreement, we crave and seek out chocolate not because it's addictive but because it tastes really, very wonderful. Many of us view it as a sinful indulgence, which increases our desire for it. And for that reason, it feels incredibly addictive. Also, keep in mind that treating yourself occasionally is perfectly acceptable. Enjoy your chocolate, make it last, and keep in mind to choose high-quality bars.