Kicking The Chocolate



     Are you a chocoholic?  A chocoholic is one who, hooked on chocolate and is frequently, or continuously is munching on bits of Hershey bars, M&M’s or just can’t do without that piece of chocolate cake after a meal.

     Most chocoholics cling desperately to the idea that chocolate is okay when in every sense of the measure, it isn’t.  The smell of chocolate cooking or the aroma of hot chocolate seems to be a part of the “all American” scene just as apple pie and mom cooking in the kitchen.  Chocolate is a part of life that few want to give up.  The sad reality is chocolate is not our best friend.


Cocoa and chocolate are among the foods highest in calories.  In one pound of original chocolate, after its first processing, there are 2,182 in fats, 482 calories in carbohydrates and 221 in proteins.  This adds up to about 3,000 calories. In one pound of good, plain, processed chocolate there are about 2,500 calories.  Milk chocolate has over 2,600 per pound!


     One of the most infamous sources of caffeine is chocolate.

     From their book Chocolate to Morphine, Andrew Well, M.D., and Winifred Rosen state: “How about chocolate? Most people think of it as a food or flavor, but it contains a chemical related to caffeine, is a stimulant, and can also be addicting.”

     Caffeine stimulates the heart, raises the blood pressure, lowers the blood sugar; and it creates a false sense of security in that it appears to relax and rest tired nerves.

     What else does chocolate contain?  Interestingly enough, it contains a substance called “oxalic acid.”  Oxalic acid has one very undesirable quality.  It renders the calcium useless for assimilation in our bodies.  When you think you are being a kind host or hostess and serve your guests or family hot chocolate, chocolate cake, or other chocolate goodies, remember you are depriving their bones and teeth of calcium.


     In addition, cocoa and chocolate have another toxic substance like caffeine; and that is theobromine, which also produces the same undesirable results in body metabolism as the caffeine does.

     If you drink a cup of cocoa for breakfast, you will be drinking one to two percent theobromine.  This is, like caffeine, an alkaloid.  It is closely related to caffeine and acts like caffeine in the body.  In other words, theobromine is a drug and is very active chemically.

     Top nutrition experts were asked to name the ten worst junk foods.  They all agreed they all agreed cola-flavored drinks (made from cocoa bean), were at the head of the list; and just a couple places down followed chocolate items.


     The United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare published a booklet entitled “The Food Defect Action Levels.”  It specified a list of current levels for natural or unavoidable defects in food.  It listed the natural defect levels in chocolate in the form of “insects, rodents and other natural contaminants” that are allowable by the Food and Drug Administration.  Allowed in chocolate and chocolate liquor (used in manufacture of such products as in chocolate bars) is up to 120 insect fragments per cup or two rodent hairs per cup.

     Four percent of cocoa beans may be infested with insects and still carry the blessing of the FDA.  Visible or solid animal excreta must not exceed 10 milligrams per pound.  For chocolate powder or pressed cakes, there must not be more than 75 insect fragments in 3 tablespoons of the powder!


     Sugar is often combined with chocolate, which creates a chemical called tyramine, that is absorbed by the nerves.  Tyramine can act as a stimulant or a depressant, which can cause competing reactions with serotonin in sugar.  This head-on collision, researchers say, adds to the addictive quality of chocolate.  The five chemicals in chocolate also cause the body to burn sugar faster, urging the chocolate lover to eat more chocolates to satisfy this sugar need.  As with any addiction, the chocolate habit can take on a viscous, self-destructive life of its own. 

     Chocolate can also contribute to depression.  With depression on the increase, we are witnessing more and more people with mental problems.  Psychological illness now hospitalizes as many people as physical ailments do.  Added to this are those in outpatient clinics, in institutions, and those who weekly visit private psychiatrists and psychotherapists with mental or emotional problems.

     People who regularly consume chocolate or go on chocolate-eating binges may not realize that they are consuming inherent, chemical toxicity, as well as eating additives that are required to make chocolate palatable, additives that are required to mask the bitterness.  A bitter taste is usually associated with harmful alkaloids, pyrolysates and strongly alkaline substances.

     Chocolate should definitely be an item that is eliminated from our diets.  There is a good substitute for chocolate.  CAROB!  This is a substitute that is much more favorable health-wise, as well as being processed under more sanitary conditions.  Why not try this healthy substitute today and kick the chocolate habit for good?  You will find carob as a raw powder in many grocery stores and most all health food stores.

     A new study reports that the saturated fats in chocolate are just as damaging to your arteries as fats found in other foods.  American Journel Clin. Nutr. 70:951952,  1999

     Whether therefore ye eat or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.  1 Corinthians 10:31


Jacqueline Verrett, Ph.D., Eating may be Hazardous to Your Health, Simon& Schuster.

Country Life Natural Foods, Southern Missionary Society,  Printed in Korea.

Ronald R. Wlodyga, Health Secrets From The Bible,  Triumph Publ. Co., Altadena, CA.

Andrew Weil, M.D. & Winifred Rosen, Chocolate To Morphine, Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass.

Weimar Bulletin, Weimar, CA 95736, Vol.9, No.1 February, 1985.