Forget love… I’d rather fall in chocolate!

Spring is here. So is Easter. There is love in the air. And there is smell of chocolate everywhere. Would you rather fall in love or fall in chocolate?

Forget love… I’d rather fall in chocolate!

May be I had rather fall in love and have chocolate as well. Both can be very aphrodisiac and good for libido. The Mexican Emperor Montezuma believed that chocolate was an aphrodisiac that he purportedly drank 50 golden goblets of it each day. I am curious to know if his sex life improved.

If you had a choice between having sex and having chocolate – what would you prefer? My guess is most men prefer sex because they seem to be in constant sex drive while women’s sexual drive is cyclic. So, they probably go for chocolate.

Two years ago there was an article in the Globe and Mail (February 10, 2007) discussing a woman’s libido and craving for chocolates. It said, “According to a 2006 survey in Redbook, an alarming 70 per cent of women prefer chocolate over sex. And last month a study by 50Plus revealed that 25 per cent of respondents said chocolate would be harder to give up than sex – while only three per cent thought sex would be tough to skip.”

An average North American consumes about five to six kilograms of chocolate a year. Did you know 40 per cent of world’s almonds, 20 per cent of world’s peanuts and eight per cent of world’s sugar is used by chocolate manufacturers? No wonder too much chocolate is fattening.

Chocolate is made from roasted cacao beans. Hot chocolate drink has been around since Christopher Columbus and others brought cacao beans to Spain in 1521. In 1643, a Spanish princess took solid chocolate to France and chocolate became very popular all over Europe.

There are three varieties of chocolates: dark, milk and white chocolate. Chocolate liquor is the main ingredient in dark and milk chocolate and white chocolate has no chocolate liquor.

Dark chocolate provides more than twice the level of flavanols than milk chocolate. White chocolate has no flavanols. Flavanols is a naturally occurring nutrient abundant in fresh cocoa known to improve blood vessel function, raise good HDL cholesterol, lower bad LDL cholesterol, reduce blood platelet stickiness, improves blood flow and reduces blood pressure. Researchers have found that cocoa has higher antioxidant capacity than tea and red wine.

Chocolate contains about 30 per cent saturated fat. Saturated fat is known to raise bad cholesterol level. But chocolate has saturated fat which is poorly absorbed in the intestine. So it does not affect our cholesterol level. There is no evidence to show that excess consumption of chocolate causes chocolate addiction, chocolate acne and chocolate migraine.

But, there is a catch. Chocolate is high in calories. Besides being fattening, chocolate can cause dental caries. So enjoy your chocolate, but in moderation, so your heart and sex life stay healthy.

So, honey, what will it be tonight? A golden goblet filled with dark yummy chocolate or sex or both!

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