Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Chocolate Bytes

Tom Hanks puts it best in his 1994 Oscar winning movie Forest Gump "Life is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're going to get".

Interesting piece of comparison he makes on this front. Life's such a twist and turn of events that every now and then one gets caught up in surprises if not woows or ooouchs. Pleasant or unpleasant, enjoyable or painful..thats life.

Today has been an interesting day, for I had the maximum number of chocolates at a single time compared to any year combined in my life. I had half a dozen Ferrero Rocher, the spherical hazelnut covered in chocolate cream for lunch. Had back to back meetings and reviews with the customer visits and Board visits, only mode of having lunch was a can of diet coke, a few chocolates and friendly doorside Chatwala. Liked the Rocher a bit, tasted the same for the first time a week earlier when my Bro bought along an entire array of chocolates. Interestingly I've be introduced to the brand of chocolates on the day of my birthday where I was to gift the same to my colleagues. I never knew brand beyond a Cadbury dairy milk, or perk or a five star. Limited knowledge, but walk down a hyper-market and look down the various options and quick reference from a Chocoholic things are different. Chocolate selection is an art in itself, never mastered it though but understood that its high an art as tasting wine, and gifting chocolates is supposed to highest form of expression of love for youth, for an adult probably a diamond would suffice. So one interesting lesson learned is way of breaking into your loved ones heart small or big is through a chocolate. Well never a day is one late to offer one and accept one.
Now for some gyan I gathered - Chocolate it seems causes certain endocrine glands to secrete hormones that affect your feelings and behavior by making you happy. Therefore, it counteracts depression, in turn reducing the stress of depression. Your stress-free life helps you maintain a youthful disposition, both physically and mentally. So, eating lots of chocolates makes one happy--- hmm interesting, but I still doubt why children keep crying before having one and after having one, only logical answer is that it increases the craving for more of everything. Well no one can stop at one.
Scientific Answer
Chocolate expecially the dark kind is an excellent source of flavonoids epicatechin and gallic acid, which are thought to possess cardioprotective properties. In small portions it can actually be beneficial, and most obesity is caused by other foods high in calories in fat, most comonly fast foods that contain trans fats.
Chemical-Chemicals- and more Chemicals..
Happy Harmones - Serotonin, Endorphins, Dopamine, Progesterone (women)
Chemicals - Theobromine, Phenylethylamine (Love chemical), Anandaminde, Magnesium (leading to females craving for Chocolate)
To begin with, Chocolate contains over 300 chemicals and it is not known how all of these affect humans. Chocolate provides a feeling of well being. Serotonin and endorphins are the main reasons for the pleasing feeling. Serotoning is often found in the cnted of exercise, and have obtained its creadet as the “happy hormone” in chocolate. Serotonin is released after the consumption of carbohydreates. Its neurotransitters help send the message of a feeling of calmness and relaxation. In fact, Serotonin is usually given to deppressed patients to help them treat out of depression and generates feelings of live and ecstacy.
Endorphins are another chemical the brings a feeling of euphoria to the brain. Endorphins have also been proven to be an effective painkiller with same effects as morphine. Endorphins block the ‘mesage’ of pain that would be sent to the brain to be translated into pain.
In addition to serotonin and endorphing, chocolate also contains another mood elevating chemical called Theobromine, which is a chemical stimulant that is usually mistaken for caffine due to similar brain activity. When chocolate is consumed, Theobromine, from cocoa, and serotine, from carbohydrates, bind to each other and become a temporary antidepressant. This kind of binding relaeses message from the brain indicating a happy, elevated mood that causes depressed individuals to grab pounds and pounds of chocolate after a rough time.
Contrary to belief, chocolate only contains small amounts of caffine. But eventhough caffine is not present in enough quantaties as in coffee it does contain the same effects but in a lesser concentration.
Another depression reliever found in chocolate is Phenylethylamine or “The love chemical.” Phenylethylamine causes changes in blood pressure and sugar levels in the blood leading to feelings of exitement and alertness. It increases positive moods and decreased depression. Phenylethylamine also causes an increase in the pulse rate which results in a similar feeling when one is in love.
Another physiological chemical in chocolate is anandamide. Anandaminde resmbles THC, a chemical that is also found in marijuna. It activates the same receptors as does THC which causes a greater production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that creates a feeling of well being associated with a high. Even though Anandaminde is already found in the brain and is broken rapidly, chocolate consumption adds to the amount that acctually gets broken down which casuses the effects of calmness and elevation. But it must be made clear that chocolate is not a drug and it would take very large amount of chocolate to create a high.
Many women report particular chocolate cravings when pre-menstrual. This is possibly because chocolate contains magnesium, a shortage of which can exacerbate pre-menstrual tension. Similar cravings during pregnancy could indicate mild anaemia, which chocolate's iron content may help to cure
May be a bold statement to make after experienced the Power-puff girl's chocolate power Man cannot live on chocolate alone; but woman sure can. Woman are atleast headstrong to focus regather and get along. Men I still doubt, legend talks about a Devadas, not a Devadaasi....

It is because of all these reasons that chocolate is the main component grabbed after a break-up or a seperation. It is a comfort food that elevates the mind and creats happines during chearless situations.
Until next blog chao

I am a White Chocolate Personality

You are White Chocolate
You are sweet, caring, and truly very innocent.
Whether your naive ways are a bit of act or not, people like to take care of you.
You are a quiet flirt, and your power is often underestimated!

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