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Chemistry of ChocolateEdit
Chocolate contains a variety of substances, some of which are addictive (such as caffeine). These include:
- Sugar - Chocolate bars (as opposed to cocoa) contain large amounts of sugar.
- Caffeine - The chemical present in coffee and tea.
- Theobromine - Various theobromines are present.
- Anandamide - An endogenous cannabinoid which is also naturally produced in the Human brain.
- Tryptophan - An essential amino acid that is a precursor to Serotonin an important neurotransmitter involved in regulating moods.
- Phenylethylamine - An endogenous amphetamine which is also naturally produced in the Human brain. Often described as a 'love chemical'.
It may be possible for the human brain to become accustomed to chocolate at regular intervals.
Chocolate may be addictive and could impact the health of the chocoholic. Proponents of hypnotherapy claim that "chocoholism" can be treated through aversives, in effect forcing the addict to associate chocolate consumption with negative stimuli used to change behavior.
Origins of the word "Chocoholic"Edit
Etymologically, "chocoholic" derives directly from alcoholic, though some linguists complain that the word, by construction, implies addiction to "chocohol" rather than "chocolate", suggesting that chocolatic is a more appropriate neologism than chocoholic.