Dark Chocolate Takes Bite Out Of Stress
Eating Dark Chocolate May Lower Stress Hormones, Researchers Say
Nov. 13, 2009 — Those stress-induced chocolate cravings may be justified after all. A new study shows that eating dark chocolate may lower levels of stress hormones in people feeling stressed out.
Researchers found that eating the equivalent of one average-sized dark chocolate candy bar each day for two weeks reduced levels of the stress hormone cortisol as well as the âfight-or-flightâ hormones known as catecholamines in highly stressed people.
The findings add to a growing number of recently discovered potential health benefits of dark chocolate. For example, cocoa has been found to be rich in a class of antioxidants called flavonoids, which have been linked to a number of health benefits.
Researchers are also investigating other compounds in dark chocolate that may offer other health benefits, such as improved insulin sensitivity, reduced blood pressure, and improved mood.
Milk Chocolate Vs Dark Chocolate For Health Benefits
The key to benefiting from the brain and mood-boosting effects of chocolate is to choose a good dark chocolate or cocoa powder and to consume moderate amounts regularly. Different cocoa products and chocolates can have greatly differing amounts of flavanols and methylxanthines depending on the manufacturing process and cocoa content.
Dark chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa70 percent or morehas a lot of these beneficial phytochemicals. On the other hand, chocolate that contains little cocoa has much less therapeutic value. Youll learn more about exactly how to choose the right chocolate and how much to consume in Surprising Cocoa Benefits Include Heart Health and Prediabetes Improvement, along with how chocolate benefits many aspects of heart and blood vessel health.
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Dark Chocolate And Red Wine: Great For Depression
Do you know how your mood and your overall mental health are being affected by the everyday decisions you make?
Its easy to see how certain aspects of life can have an impact. Having a very busy job or negative interactions with people, for example, could leave you feeling anxious and exhausted at the end of the day. If you dont address such issues in the long run, they could even contribute to depression.
Other aspects of life, however, are less obvious in their effect on mental health.
Did you know that the foods you eat could either protect you from depression or contribute to it? Research into food suggests that certain foods and the natural compounds found in them affect the brain.
The good news is that a few of the tastiest options out there seem to have protective qualities. Today, well talk about two of these foods: dark chocolate and red wine. Could these actually be incorporated in a happiness diet? Science says yes.
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Could Dark Chocolate Help Depression
If you are like me, your consumption of dark chocolate probably increased dramatically during this past holiday season. All those stacked boxes of goodies were hard to resist.
Maybe now you are thinking, Ok, enough with the sweets! Time to get back to healthy eating again. But what if I told you that dark chocolate could be improving your mood?
An interesting study was conducted that included over 13,000 people who self-reported their dark chocolate consumption. Those who ate dark chocolate in a 24-hour period compared to those who did not, reported less depression. In fact, the difference was 70% as measured on the PHQ-9 . The researchers noted the results were due to dark, not milk chocolate.
Now, dont reach for the big bar of dark chocolate. You only need a little less than half an ounce to get the benefit. Dark chocolate is defined as having at least a 45% or greater amount of cocoa. Optimal dose is one to two ounces of 70% or greater cocoa. The higher the cocoa, the less sugar and calories.
People with depression sometimes crave dark chocolate due to a belief that it helps relieve feelings of anxiety and depression. In fact, dark chocolate does have mood enhancing properties. And on a side note, it has been found to help with cognition as well. So dont feel guilty when you want that afternoon treat! Grab a square of dark chocolate! It just might help you feel better! Its pleasure with none of the guilt!
History: Depression In Bipolar Affective Disorder
Chronic depression isnt practically a medical diagnosis in the DSM-5, the main guide of mental disorders. Its just that many people have depressive episodes with a clear beginning dark chocolate studies depression as well as end , to make sure thats just how experts have actually framed the problem.
To be effective, medical professionals require to have a wide range of therapies. This is why the pharmaceutical market is proactively establishing brand-new dark chocolate studies depression medicines, promising even more performance with, ideally, less adverse effects.
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Why Is Dark Chocolate More Effective Than Milk Chocolate
The research indicates that dark chocolate may have a more significant effect on mood than other types of chocolate. But why? Flavonoids may provide the answer to this. Flavonoids are a group of plant chemicals found in dark chocolate. There are early studies that explore a possible link between depression and chronic inflammation. indicate that flavonoids may be very effective in reducing systemic inflammation. So, using this connection, this could demonstrate why dark chocolate may boost mental wellness.
Why Does Chocolate Have Health Benefits
Chocolate is made from the fermented, roasted, and finely ground seeds of Theobroma cacao tree. A chocolate bar labeled 70 percent is a good choice it contains 70 percent ground cacao and 30 percent sugar. The ground cacao, which is comprised of cacao butter along with ground particles of the cacao seed, contains a potent mixture of phytochemicals with various medicinal properties.
The primary phytochemicals in cacao are the polyphenols and the methylxanthines . These compounds have been extensively studied and are thought to be responsible for most of chocolates therapeutic effects via their multiple effects in the body. Chocolates benefits may include:
- Increased blood flow to the brain
- Regulation of genes that control body weight
- Inhibition of cancer growth
It is through these mechanisms, among others, that researchers have shown that chocolate benefits health, helping to treat and prevent diseases of the brain and cardiovascular system in particular.
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How Can Chocolate Have A Positive Effect On Health
Chocolate is rich in psychoactive ingredients, with analogues of anandamide, which produce an effect similar to cannabinoid. Cannabis has mood-enhancing properties that can help produce a feeling of euphoria and produce endorphins. Moreover, chocolate contains several endogenous biogenic amines and phenylethylamine, which is a neuromodulator thats necessary for regulating peoples moods.
However, research shows that for these mood improvements to be appreciated, it is important that the experience of eating chocolate is enjoyed, and the ingredients not be merely consumed. Moreover, the type of chocolate consumed also matters. While the aforementioned benefits are true for all chocolates, it is the dark chocolate that is rich in flavonoids and has a higher concentration of antioxidants. The consumption of dark chocolate has shown to improve inflammatory mediators that play a vital role in the onset of depression.
The Myth Of Comfort Food
Often people try to influence their mood by eating comfort foods like ice cream, pizza or mac n cheese. The problem, experts say, is that while those foods typically offer a tantalizing combination of fat, sugar, salt and carbs that make them hyperpalatable, they can actually make us feel worse.
Traci Mann, who heads the health and eating laboratory at the University of Minnesota, ran a series of studies to determine whether a persons preferred comfort food improves their mood. Participants were asked the question: What foods would make you feel better if you were in a bad mood? The most common responses were chocolate, ice cream and cookies. The respondents also rated foods they enjoyed but would not normally eat to seek comfort.
Before each test, the participants watched film clips that were known to elicit anger, hostility, fear, anxiety and sadness. After the film, the viewers filled out a negative mood questionnaire to indicate how they were feeling. Then they were given a heaping portion of their favorite comfort food, a food they liked but didnt view as a comfort food, a neutral food or no food at all. Everyone had three minutes alone to eat their food, or sit quietly. After the break, they filled out the mood questionnaire again.
Whether a participant ate comfort food, any food or no food didnt make a difference in the persons mood. The factor that seemed to matter most was the passage of time.
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Dark Chocolate Lowers Risk Of Depression Study Finds
Eating dark chocolate may positively affect mood and relieve depressive symptoms, according to a study looking at whether different types of chocolate are associated with mood disorders.
The study, published in Depression and Anxiety, is the first to examine the association with depression according to the type of chocolate consumed.
Researchers from UCL, a London University, worked in collaboration with scientists from the University of Calgary and Alberta Health Services Canada and assessed data from 13,626 adults from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Participants chocolate consumption was assessed against their scores on the Patient Health Questionnaire, which assesses depressive symptoms.
In the cross-sectional study, a range of other factors including height, weight, marital status, ethnicity, education, household income, physical activity, smoking and chronic health problems were also taken into account to ensure the study only measured chocolates effect on depressive symptoms.
Lead author Dr Sarah Jackson said: This study provides some evidence that consumption of chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, may be associated with reduced odds of clinically relevant depressive symptoms.
Depression affects more than 300 million people worldwide, according to the World Health Organization, and is the leading global cause of disability.
Phenylethylamine has a similar mood-boosting effect to cannabis
Depression and Anxiety
The Top 5 Factors To Think About Online Therapy As Your Mental Health Treatment Dark Chocolate Helps Depression
Because it can supply comfort, anonymity, as well as cost, online therapy is expanding in appeal. As a result, it has actually been researched on a bigger scale over the past few years as well as is beginning to see a significant increase in usage.
The top 5 factors to consider on the internet therapy as your psychological health therapy consist of:.
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What Is Online Therapy And Also How Can It Aid Dark Chocolate Helps Depression
Online therapy has increasingly become a preferred method to obtain mental health and wellness treatments or psychotherapy. It is accessible anytime, anywhere, as long as you are attached to the web. Online therapists are likewise a simple means for people that reside in areas without traditional specialist offered. Dark Chocolate Helps Depression
The major goal of online therapy is to supply reliable treatment that consists of emotional support and also assistance in the convenience of ones very own office or home. There are several reasons why its a good suggestion to use on-line therapy rather than typical therapies.
On the internet counseling is quickly ending up being a popular service for individuals who dont have the time to enter into a typical counseling session due to the fact that they are also active or work too many hours to leave home. On top of that, its helpful for people that live alone or are otherwise unable to go to in person sessions with their counselor.
Does Chocolate Affect Mood
Dark chocolate stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that create feelings of pleasure. Dark chocolate also contains serotonin, an antidepressant that can elevate mood, says Scritchfield. In addition to feeling good, this is what happens to your body when you eat chocolate.
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Potential Antidepressant Qualities Of Thc
Like its chemical analogue, anandamide, THC also induces euphoria and feelings of wellbeing. Moreover, one study published in Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior , indicated that a dose of 2.5mg/kg THC, in mice, delivered significant antidepressant-like effects.
The CB1 receptor, a cannabinoid receptor to which THC binds, is thought to play a key role in this antidepressant-like effect. Studies have shown that activation of CB1 in mice resulted in antidepressant-like effects similar to prescribed antidepressant medication. Further research has demonstrated that CB1 may play a role in defending against symptoms of depression because its activation leads to neurochemical changes. These include the enhancement of noradrenaline, 5-hydroxytryptamine, and dopamine in regions of the brain associated with mood.
Furthermore, activation of cannabinoid receptors reduces cortisol levels, a stress hormone closely linked to both inflammation and depression. Research has found that the activation of cannabinoid receptors plays a key role in the negative feedback of the neuroendocrine stress response. Cannabinoid receptor activation may be able to inhibit the stress-cascade, which results in the release of corticotropin-releasing hormone. This then produces adrenocorticotropin hormone, which initiates cortisol production.
Eating Dark Chocolate May Reduce Risk Of Depression Study Suggests
Does dark chocolate make us happy?
A recent study suggests that eating chocolate, especially dark chocolate, is linked to lower odds of depressive symptoms.
CLEVELAND – Chocolate lovers, rejoice!
A recent study suggests that eating chocolate, especially dark chocolate, is linked to lower odds of depressive symptoms.
The study looked at data on 13,626 adults who took part in a national health and nutrition survey, and the findings were published in the journal Depression & Anxiety.
Researchers found that, out of all participants who reported regular chocolate consumption, only those who ate dark chocolate had significantly lower odds of depressive symptoms.
In the case of dark chocolate, it was particularly powerful when people consumed dark chocolate, it reduced the risk of depression or had a 70 percent lower risk of looking depressed on the scales that they used, said Cleveland Clinics Scott Bea, PsyD, who did not take part in the study.
Dr. Bea said people are always looking for ways to keep their moods up that dont require a lot of energy.
I think were always looking for other ways to be happy we know that good, robust exercise, has protective factors against depression but, eating chocolate just seems easier, he said.
Dark chocolate, which is rich in iron, copper, magnesium, zinc and phosphorous, has been shown to have myriad health benefits.
Eating dark chocolate may reduce risk of depression, according to a new study.
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Just How To Beginning An Online Therapy Session
Online therapy chat is an exceptional way to share their struggles, ideas, as well as sensations with an online specialist. You can have an open as well as honest conversation with your specialist completely free, or you can pay for expert sessions.
How does one begin an on the internet therapy session?
There are some guidelines to comply with when starting a therapy session. When you are unclear regarding something, it is best to chat to your therapist prior to publishing on social media. Dark Chocolate Helps Depression
What Did The Researchers Do
The authors explored data from the United States National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. This shows how common health, nutrition and other factors are among a representative sample of the population.
People in the study reported what they had eaten in the previous 24 hours in two ways. First, they recalled in person, to a trained dietary interviewer using a standard questionnaire. The second time they recalled what they had eaten over the phone, several days after the first recall.
The researchers then calculated how much chocolate participants had eaten using the average of these two recalls.
Dark chocolate needed to contain at least 45% cocoa solids for it to count as dark.
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The researchers excluded from their analysis people who ate an implausibly large amount of chocolate, people who were underweight and/or had diabetes.
The remaining data was then divided in two ways. One was by categories of chocolate consumption . The other way was by the amount of chocolate .
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The researchers assessed peoples depressive symptoms by having participants complete a short questionnaire asking about the frequency of these symptoms over the past two weeks.
The researchers controlled for other factors that might influence any relationship between chocolate and depression, such as weight, gender, socioeconomic factors, smoking, sugar intake and exercise.
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Avoidable Etiologies Of Epilepsies In Saudi Arabia: A Tertiary Care Experience
Individuals with major depressive disorder experience sensations of sadness and/or a loss of passion in activities they once delighted in. MDD can cause a variety dark chocolate studies depression of psychological as well as physical issues that can restrict an individuals capability to efficiently work at work as well as in the house.
Is There A Link Between Dark Chocolate And Depression
A survey-based study looking at chocolate consumption and depression finds that people who eat dark chocolate are less likely to report depressive symptoms. What do these findings mean, and can we trust them?
Over the years, chocolate has been the focus of a great deal of research .
Thanks to its flavor and texture, chocolate is a popular food. As a result, a large number of people tend to read and share any studies that investigate its potential health benefits .
Overall, its high sugar and fat content make chocolate a snack for people to enjoy in moderation, but consumers and experts are keen to find hidden depths to this silky wonder.
The most recent addition to chocolates body of research comes from University College London in the United Kingdom. The UCL team worked in conjunction with scientists from the University of Calgary and Alberta Health Services Canada.
The title of the UCL press release is, People who eat dark chocolate less likely to be depressed, which is a bold header, indeed.
Before we continue, it is worth explaining that, as far as we can tell, this study did not receive funding from any chocolate manufacturers. The scientists published their results in the journal
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