Chocolate is good for you. Yes, health food, even.
1)Chocolate helps your memory. At Wheeling Jesuit University Professor Bryan Raudenbush led a study "Effects of Chocolate Consumption Finds That Chocolate Consumption Enhances Cognitive Performance on Enhancing Cognative Performance" and determined that chocolate can improve your brain activity. I have not read the study, but I find it facinating.
2)Chocolate makes you feel good. Other research shows that some of the ingredients seem to affect the brain's neurotrasmitters. One is Tryptophan (which can also make you sleepy) but is utilized by the body to make seratonin, which is a neurotransmitter that releaves some of the symptoms of depression. Another is phenylethylamine which works by stimulating the pleasure centers of the brain.
A third is anandamide, which is a neurotransmitter that acts like THC, the active ingredient in cannabis (pot, mary jane).
3)Chocolate may prevent tooth decay, or at least according to scientists at Japan's Osaka University. The cocoa beans which are the raw chocolate product contain an antibacterial agent that fights plaque.
4)Chocolate contains called flavinoids, which thin the blood, helping to prevent clotting. Flavinoids are also anti-oxidents. They help prevent heart disease.
5) Chocolate helps you live longer. At Harvard, research shows that people who eat chocolate as rarely as three times a month live approximately a year longer than those who do not eat chocolate at all. However, only for very dark chocolate, as the fat and sugar in milk chocolate will counteract the benefit.
6) Chocolate is being researched to see if it can help the immune system. The chemical polyphenol CMP, which is contained by chocolate, may inhibit the rheumatic response (arthritis) and inhibits IgE which worsens atopic dematitis and asthma.
Thus, I argue that one MUST eat at least one square of dark Lindt Chocolate or it's chocolatey equivalent at least once a day.
Submitted, July 25, 2006 to those who would prevent Chocolate purchases at my house by the Reverend Mommy.